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Technology

Platform brings together traders and transporters

Amitruck
Amitruck Peer-to-peer trucking service across Africa. PHOTO | COURTESY 

Traders can now get the best prices for transport of their goods following the unveiling of Amitruck, a mobile app connecting pick-ups, truckers and shippers across Africa.

Customers only need to key in the app, the description of the cargo, its value, origin, destination and the preferred mode of transportation.

Amitruck collects all this information and relays it to its over 400 transport service providers on the platform who then submit a price.

The customer can select the best price based on the listed proposals on the app.

“To the customer, Amitruck provides a safe, simple way for the customers to transport their goods whilst accessing competitive rates and also tracking their goods in real time,” said Amitruck Founder and CEO Mark Mwangi.

He said goods transported using the Amitruck app are also insured for free up to Sh500,000 with options to increase the cover at a premium.

The app’s name is derived from the French word ‘ami’ meaning friend. Vehicles listed on the platform include canters and pickup trucks.

Security

Prior to listing on the app, which was launched in January, the truck owners and drivers are vetted to guarantee the security of the customers’ goods.

The benefit the truck owners and drivers derive from the app is that they have access to more business outside of their networks. It also gives them full control of their trucks and what jobs to engage in.

Payment made by customers through the app is not released to the driver until delivery of goods is confirmed.

Amitruck says it has explored “the functionalities of both the mobile and cloud technologies to build a differentiated business model and tailor-made solutions suitable for the market”.

“As we embrace the 4th Industrial revolution, the mobile phone has played a significant role in shaping African technology,” said Mr Mwangi.

“Due to its accessibility and high penetration rates in Africa, smartphone gives start-ups an appropriate tool to create and deliver locally relevant solutions.”

While there is the option of rail transport for cargo, road transport remains the preferred mode by importers since truckers arrange for transport to the doorstep of the customer.

Road transporters also entice importers with free storage of goods in their yards awaiting collection.

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