Companies

Bolt receives Sh19.8 billion from US firm for expansion

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Summary

  • Bolt Kenya country manager Olaoluwa Akinnusi said the company will expand its network beyond the 16 urban centres it operates.
  • This comes after Bolt, the global company, received Sh19.8 billion from private equity firm, D1 Capital Partners, which will also be for invested in security tools and expansion of food delivery business.
  • The plan involves inclusion of facial verification tools to prevent sharing of the driver’s platforms and improve security.

Taxi hailing services Bolt Kenya is set to launch e-scooter rental business and expand to smaller towns and peri-urban centres on the back of billions of shillings raised from US private equity firm.

Bolt Kenya country manager Olaoluwa Akinnusi said the company will expand its network beyond the 16 urban centres it operates.

This comes after Bolt, the global company, received Sh19.8 billion from private equity firm, D1 Capital Partners, which will also be invested in security tools and expansion of food delivery business.

The plan involves inclusion of facial verification tools to prevent sharing of the driver’s platforms and improve security.

Bolt will also be expanding its services to other peri-urban towns and pump up its food delivery business, Bolt Food, launched last week, taking on its competitors including Jumia Food, Uber Eats and Glovo.

The company is also pushing for e-scooters, a two-wheeled vehicle running on small rechargeable batteries, for short-hop trips in other markets. 

Electric scooters, which are cheaper than normal car rides, are fully functional in Europe and were recently launched in South Africa.

The company reckon that lack of infrastructure to support the e-scooters remains a barrier to their rollout in Kenya.

Editor's Note: An earlier version of this story stated that taxi-hailing service Bolt is planning to launch e-scooters in Kenya. The company has no such plans for the Kenyan market.