AFRICA – SWVL, Egyptian start-up app-based shuttle service. plans to focus its expansion to other cities in Africa, including Lagos and Johannesburg, reports Kenyan Wall Street.
The bus hailing company will use Nairobi as a launchpad to extend to other cities in Africa. This will allow the company to provide reliable, convenient, and affordable public transport across the continent.
SWVL plans to launch base in Lagos before the end of the year. Later, the bus-hailing app will reach other cities like Johannesburg, Abidjan, Dar es Salaam, and Addis Ababa.
In an exclusive interview with the Kenyan Wallstreet, SWVL CEO Mostafa Kandil revealed that the company is looking to solve the public transport problem in under-served markets in the continent.
“We are looking to expand into Lagos soon. The city has a mega population that presents a huge under-served market, which presents a huge opportunity for SWVL.” Mostafa remarked. “The plan is to expand into two or more African Cities by the end of the year” he continued.
SWVL’s expansion to other cities in Africa serves to fill the gap in the transport sector. For instance, emerging markets have a highly underserved middle-class population.
In most cases, commuters are torn between unreliable public transport and expensive cabs. The company wishes to serve this tech-savvy population through buses that connect different destinations, guaranteeing both punctuality and comfort.
“We tap into the middle-class and the upper-middle class, a segment that public buses in emerging markets do not serve” revealed the CEO.
At a global level, the company plans to expand into Manila in the first half of 2020. Moreover, the firm is eyeing expansion in South East Asian Markets with similar transport problems.
In Egypt where SWVL had started, it is available only in two cities, Cairo and Alexandria.
Founded in 2017, SWVL dubs itself as a private premium alternative to public transportation enabling riders to book seats on its network of “high-quality” buses that are owned and operated by third parties, through its mobile apps.
The startup operates bus lines on fixed routes with customers boarding the buses from specific pick-up spots to be dropped at pre-defined (virtual) stations. The users also have the options to track the buses in real-time.