Source: Naija Tech Blog
In quite dramatic fashion, Bolt has added tricycles to its ride-hailing options and has launched the service in Uyo, Akwa-Ibom state. This is the ride-hailing company’s second major update since the year began, the first being the addition of multiple destinations and passengers to one trip.
In Nigeria’s ride-hailing sector, there are quite a number of options available to people based on quality or pricing. The many options present result in stiffer competition and forces companies to innovate and keep up with competitors.
This is evident in Bolt’s launch of tricycles in Uyo today.
In facing up to competition and delivering better services that fit the audience, Bolt Country Manager, Femi Akin-Laguda said: “tricycles in Uyo is the first step in this direction as we intend to bring a renewed effort to solving local problems with globally tested solutions.”
“At Bolt, we will continue to find innovative ways to cater to local demand for popular services. We are thrilled to introduce the tricycle service in Uyo. We believe that it resonates well with the culture in this city and that this category will provide an easy and affordable transportation option for trips around Uyo.”
Femi Akin-Laguda, Bolt country manager for Nigeria
Will tricycles help Bolt gain more share in the Nigerian Ride-hailing sector?
With the spate of traffic jams in different parts of the country, tricycles are increasingly becoming the choice mode of transport for people as they commute daily.
The tricycles, which are locally called keke, are light and compact, which helps them to move through traffic easily than cars. They also provide more safety than bikes and this effectively makes them a perfect blend of both.
Opay was the first company to introduce kekes as part of its offerings in August 2019. It started with a #10 ride to specific destinations. Opay launched otrike instead of Oride in Aba because motorcycles are banned in Aba. From Aba, Otrike expanded to Akure, Ilorin, Kano and Ibadan.
Bolt is launching its tricycle offering in the southsouth, and will most likely expand from there to other states. Motorcycles have been banned in Uyo since September, 2019, meaning that besides vehicles only tricycles are allowed on the roads. This makes tricycle business lucrative in the city.
Bolt’s tricycle debut in the country will open it up to another class of commuters and give it more market share in that area. However, the two major tricycle hailing companies (Bolt and Opay) will face off at some point, except if either of Bolt and Opay choose to operate in cities where the other does not operate, which is unlikely.
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