Nigeria’s Gokada Raises $5.3M for Uber-like Motorcycle Venture

Nigeria’s Gokada Raises $5.3M for Uber-like Motorcycle Venture
In many large cities across Africa, motorcycle taxis are as common as yellow cabs in New York or Ubers in Cape Town.

That includes Lagos, Nigeria, where ride-hail startup Gokada has raised a massive $5.3 million Series A funding to help grow its ventures. The two-wheel transit business has trained and on-boarded more than 1,000 motorcycles and their pilots on its app that connects commuters to moto-taxis and the company’s signature green, DOT-approved helme
Started by Fahim Saleh in 2018, Gokada has completed over 1 million trips to date, and the world is definitely starting to notice with multiple new investors getting involved. Gokada will use the financing to increase its fleet and ride volume, while developing a network to offer goods and services to its drivers.

“We’re going to start a Gokada club in each of the cities with a restaurant where drivers can relax, and we’ll experiment with a Gokada Shop, where drivers can get things they need on a regular basis, such as plantains, yams and rice”, founder Saleh said. 

But Uber has motorbike options in Eastern African countries and Bolt (formerly Taxify) just launched the same in Kenya? Gokada differs from these in that it doesn’t split fare revenue with drivers. Gokada charges drivers a flat-fee of 3,000 Nigerian Naira a day (about R122) to work on their platform.

The company is looking to generate a larger share of its revenue from building a commercial network around its rider community. “We don’t do anything with the fares. We want to create an Amazon Prime-type membership…and ecosystem around the driver where we’re going to provide them more and more services, such as motorcycle insurance, maintenance, personal life-insurance and micro-finance loans,” Saleh said.

The appeal to passengers is the lower cost of motorbike transit compared to buses or cabs (about R27 is Gokada’s average fare) and the ability of two-wheelers to cut through the heavy congestion in cities such as Lagos and Nairobi. 

With 190 million people, Nigeria is Africa's country with the largest population. It's fitting then that Gokada doesn't plan on expanding to more countries but rather aims to fully actualize their business in Nigeria before looking for profits elsewhere. “We plan to expand all over Nigeria. We think it’s a large enough market for now,” said Saleh. 



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