Nigerian mobility company, Uber has launched its first bike-hailing service in Nigeria, which will be operated in the largest city in the country, Ibadan, Oyo State. This is according to the statement from the country manager, Tope Akinwumi.
According to the firm, the ‘okada’ rides would go from as low as N100 upwards depending on the distance. Uber has been active in Nigeria for the past 8 years, operating in five cities including Lagos, Ibadan, Abuja, Port Harcourt.
The country manager was of the opinion that there is a need to continue to provide solutions for transportation and mobility and it is for this reason that the motorcycle service was launched. Upon the launch, she stated
“As we recover, we know we need to continue to offer solutions that respond to consumers who are looking for smart mobility solutions, while providing new revenue streams and earning opportunities for drivers”.
The motorcycle service has previously been launched in other countries. In 2014 it was launched in Thailand but failed after two years because of the government’s policy in the country. It 2018, it was launched again in Uganda where it was a success and even expanded to Kenya.
There are speculations as to why it wasn’t introduced in Lagos which is usually the first point of entry for most companies testing the Nigerian market, however the “okada ban” in Lagos would pose a major challenge to the service.
Meanwhile, the company joins Bolt, formerly Taxify, which launched its bike-hailing service in Ibadan in July 2019. Ibadan is the largest city in Wes West Africa and the second largest on the African continent behind Cairo, Egypt.
The city boasts of a population of over 3.65 million people with over 6 million people within its metropolitan area. A major incentive for the launch of the service in the area.