ImpactAlpha, November 22 — Kenya has emerged as Africa’s early leader in e-mobility, primarily for two- and three-wheelers. EV leaders in the country, Opibus and BasiGo, are making the push for electric buses. Nairobi-based BasiGo works with Kenya’s public transit bus owners and operators, which own more than 100,000 buses and minibusses, to electrify their fleets.
The company partners with banks to offer a pay-as-you-drive financing model that allows owners to purchase an electric bus for a similar upfront cost to a diesel bus. Owners and operators pay a subscription fee to lease e-bus batteries, charge at BasiGo’s charging stations, and to receive maintenance and other services. BasiGo says the high upfront cost is the biggest to the electric bus transition in emerging markets.
BasiGo has raised $6.6 million to start commercial deployment of its locally-made electric buses, as well as needed infrastructure.
“Over 90% of Kenya’s electricity already comes from renewables [and] yet Kenya’s transport sector relies entirely on imported petroleum fuels,” said BasiGo’s Jit Bhattacharya. “By electrifying Kenya’s public transport, we can make an immediate dent in climate emissions, clean up the air in our cities, and give bus owners relief from the rising cost of diesel.”
Backers in the round include Mobility54, Novastar Ventures, My Climate Journey and other investors.