Swvl, a Cairo-based bus booking startup is set to launch in Lagos, Nigeria by mid-July with 50 buses. Nigeria will be the second country outside of Egypt Swvl will launch its services after Kenya.
The startup last year had said that it plans to be in seven megacities by the end of 2019 including many in Southeast Asia but has apparently changed its plans to focus on Africa for now.
Founded in 2017 by Mostafa Kandil who was previously with Careem, Ahmed Sabbah and Mahmoud Nouh, Swvl connects commuters with private buses, allowing them to reserve seats on these buses and pay the fare through company’s mobile app, which is currently available in Cairo, Alexandria & Nairobi.
The startup has recently partnered with the American automotive giant Ford to provide Ford Transit minibus as the preferred vehicle of choice on Swvl’s routes by offering competitive lending rates to operators.
Swvl may have been one of the first players to start this category in the region but now has Uber and Careem among its competitors, both of which launched their bus booking services in Egypt late last year.
Swvl raised US$30 million in November last year, led by BECO Capital and DiGAME, bringing its total funding to US$38.5 million.