When it comes to hailing-ride applications Uber is the power house around the world and in parts of Africa where it operates, but Thabo Eric Mashale believes that he can oust the big fish from the throne with this innovation known as Africa Ride which is available on both iOS and Android platforms and allow users to request for private drivers, while following the process of that driver in-app. All this is very Uber-like, but Mashale says there are key differences.
He quit his call center job in 2012 to launch a shuttle company with one vehicle, which expanded to a fleet of cars no sooner than later it gave birth to Africa Ride which was funded from the previous fleet car business which had also boasted with a team of 10.
“We realized that coming from a professional shuttle service we can mix it with the current available trend of technologies and offer customers better service at competitive prices while maintaining quality,” Mashale said.
Their is a huge gap when it comes to car preferences and payment plans when it comes to corporate, NGOs, individual and government departments but the Africa Ride App has this sorted by offering accounts with corporate the weekly and monthly payment terms with the option to pay by wallet, and passengers can select the drivers according to the area they are in.
They also offer personal customer care services breaking the norm of speaking to an app which promotes trust between the company and its customers. It also empowers each and every driver by giving them ownership of a percentage stake in the business unlike Uber.
Africa Ride is seeking funding to reach new markets, but already has over 500 professional and trained drivers on its system. So far the reception by fellow South Africans residing in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Rustenburg has been really positive.
The future plan is to expand the service in the next few months to very untapped markets which have never used this kind of service.
We at Incubate wish Mashale all the best.
Image credits : Africa Ride