Uber steps up competition for rivals with Nakuru entry


Uber has launched its taxi-hailing services and online food delivery business in Nakuru, joining rivals Bolt and other local operators in market share battle.

The launch will step up competition in a town where taxi hailing services is dominated by local operator Wasili Cabs and Bolt with Bomba and Safiri racing for market share.

“We remain optimistic about the business opportunity in Kenya, and the launch of Nakuru shows our commitment to the region,” said Brian Njao, Uber Head for East Africa.

“With the Covid-19 pandemic, we are committed to helping people take essential trips safely, while providing more avenues for economic opportunities for Kenyans.”

Estonian taxi-hailing firm Bolt has wider presence in Kenya including Kisumu and Kakamega.

In Nakuru Uber’s food delivery service, Uber Eats has partnered with restaurants including KFC and Java House, Jamia Food Mart, Majid Restaurant and Lennz Pizza to enable customers to order food through an app.

The move is expected to increase revenue for Uber Kenya and the restaurants after the government introduced fresh directives including ban of sale of alcohol and dining in restaurants, and increased curfew hours from 8pm to 4am, translating to less operating hours.

Bolt also recently launched its food delivery service, Bolt Food, for the first time in Nairobi, competing with Uber Eats, Glovo and Jumia Food.

“The launch of Uber Eats is not only beneficial for residents, but it is also an opportunity for local restaurants to expand their business by having the option to serve more customers,” the firm said.

“Uber Eats provides restaurant owners access to convenient and affordable technology, as well, as actionable data and analytics that can make their businesses more efficient and profitable.”

The launch of Uber Eats in Nakuru follows the recent expansion in Mombasa, Ongata Rongai, Syokimau and Kitengela.