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UAE’s Shorooq Partners Invests in Africa’s Next Big Transport Solution

By leading the seed round of QuickBus, the seasoned startup funder is backing up the future of African mobility.

Kenyan startup QuickBus closes off its seed round and gains an undisclosed amount of investment. The seed round was majorly backed by strong investors from the region, such as Shorooq Partners, EchoVC, and Oman Technology Fund, who had also invested in SWVL. By aggregating bus booking for all major bus operators, QuickBus simplifies the confusing transport landscape that holds back African mobility, as well as introduces safety and comfort selection features that open up and enhance timely bus commute for all kinds of passengers.

QuickBus is set for continued strong growth in 2020 to drive African bus transport into the 21st century, establish dominance and develop more customer-focused services. The startup has launched their operations in three major markets in Kenya, Uganda, and Angola, while also securing partnerships in a further seven major markets across the continent as part of their mission to cover most of the sub-Saharan Africa region inside 3 years, serving a market of 800 million people.

“When you book a bus, you should know more than the price and the destination, you should also know more about the experience you’re going to have. That’s how it is in other parts of the world and Africa shouldn’t be any different,” says Humphrey Wrey, QuickBus founder and CEO. “Our platform allows customers to see reviews and select seats based on their preferences because knowing if your 18-hour journey will be very uncomfortable or quite comfortable is valuable information. That was the genesis of the QuickBus idea.”

QuickBus has introduced a number of customer-focused services found in more established global markets that are also viable for usage in this specific market.  Female travellers can now choose to be seated next to other women on night buses, as an effort to ensure safety, similar to the protocol used in India. The startup’s customer rating system, meanwhile, provides African travellers with an honest and transparent booking process, which aims to improve efficiency of service across the sector, as well as bringing offline operators online and raising the standard of bus transportation in general, to the benefit of all passengers. 

“Having grown up and operated businesses in the region I have experienced first-hand that the opportunity in the long-distance mobility space in Africa is massive and having seen this segment disrupted in other emerging markets we were actively studying the East African market to see who was leading the way. This is when we met QuickBus and its strong management team, which made us firm believers in their ability to execute and dominate this space,” says Kunal Savjani Partner at Shorooq Partners.

 


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