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Uber rolls out electric bikes in Kenya, its first African market


Ride-hailing firm Uber on Thursday launched electric motorcycles in Kenya, its first in Africa that will see a 30-35% reduction in running costs for drivers

This launch is part of the firm’s sustainable mobility agenda aimed at making it a global zero-emissions platform by 2040.

Uber says using Electric Boda will initially cost 15-20% less than a regular Uber Boda trip.

“Now is the time to take solid steps that enhance sustainable practices and as a business, we are committed to being part of the collective efforts to reduce the carbon footprint.” said Frans Hiemstra, Director and Regional General Manager, Uber, Middle East and Africa. 

”Through the launch of Electric Boda on our platform, we are proud to provide an option for emissions-free mobility in Kenya,” he added.

The launch comes at a time when the Kenyan government is rolling out the National Electric Mobility Plan, which focuses on creating a more green transportation system and rolling out diverse initiatives for sustainable road traffic management. 

“We are doing our part to aid the transition to eco-friendly mobility products and to support national sustainability objectives. The launch of Electric Boda will provide Kenyans with one of the most affordable ways to move from one place to another, with prices 15-20% below the price of our existing product,” says Imran Manji, Head of East Africa for Uber. 

Uber Uber Electric Motorcycles Kenya will initially be available in Nairobi, with plans to expand to other cities, enabling riders across the country to also access emissions-free trips. 

Uber Kenya says safety remains central to it and continues to be reflected in new products launched. It says riders taking a trip on Electric Boda can still expect the same safety standards to apply namely, RideCheck, which detects unusually long stops along a trip route and confirms with the driver and rider if all is well, access to 24-7 emergency response services, and audio recording among others.

According to the World Bank, the boda boda sector in Kenya employs over 1.5 million young people and contributes approximately Kshs. 202 billion to the economy annually. 

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Nixon Kanali

Tech journalist based in Nairobi. I track and report on tech and African startups. Founder and Editor of TechTrends Media. Nixon is also the East African tech editor for Africa Business Communities. Send tips to nkanali@techtrendske.co.ke.

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