Nigeria’s leading tech-enabled scheduled bus sharing (mass transit) company, Shuttlers, today announced a $1.6 million seed round and its plans to scale operations into other cities across Africa. This new investment round was led by VestedWorld, a Chicago and Africa-based investment firm with Interswitch, Rising Tide Africa, Launch Africa, EchoVC, CMC 21 & Alsa, ShEquity, Five35, Consonance Investment, CcHub Syndicate, Sakore, and Nikky Taurus also participating in this round.
Shuttlers has led the revolutionization of shared mobility through its innovative solutions and service offerings. With Shuttlers, customers now have the option to commute in comfort and at an affordable rate on scheduled and predetermined routes. With the subscription feature on Shuttlers, commuters can schedule rides in advance over a period of time they choose.
Commuters can also book trips along fixed routes at 80 percent lower rates than other ride-hailing services without the surges and peak-period pricing – which is the first of its kind in Nigeria and Africa.
Damilola Olokesusi, Co-founder and CEO of Shuttlers, launched the company in 2016 to tackle the inevitable problem of inefficient transportation in cities like Lagos, Africa’s most populous city & Nigeria’s socio-economic nerve center. Damilola and her team have since bootstrapped the business and grown it from one route in Ajah to Victoria Island to over thirty (30) routes with over 300 bus-stops, over 100 (unbranded) buses within the city and, has recorded over 2 million trips taken by commuters. We can only imagine how far Shuttlers’ team plans to go with their first round of investment.
Speaking on the need for Shuttlers and its mission, Damilola Olokesusi stated: “Our mission at Shuttlers is to transform the way people commute around the world, by building a global partner network and connecting communities of shuttlers like we are presently doing in Lagos, Nigeria.. The negative impact of inefficiencies in the mobility space is visible in the quality of life, mental health, and work productivity of commuters. We also see its impact on the more vulnerable and neglected population in our society; women, children, physically challenged, and the elderly. I’m confident that our smart mobility solutions can solve some of these urban mobility challenges sustainably and also reduce carbon emission.
We can’t deny the reality of public transportation in cities like Lagos. We will always be committed to our goal of enabling professionals in metropolitan cities across Africa to access a stress-free and affordable transport system for their daily commute needs. As commuters settle into the new normal and search for safer and cost-effective ways to move post the global-pandemic, we have expanded our offerings to provide community-focused transportation solutions. We will also continue to explore feasible solutions tailored towards the overall improvement of the cities’ transport system”, said Damilola.
Nneka Eze, Managing Director at VestedWorld, said, “We believe our investment will help Shuttlers extend its offering to adjacent markets and help solve inefficiencies in the transportation sector across regions in Africa.” Lavanya Anand, Principal at VestedWorld, added “We are very excited to back Damilola in this venture and work alongside a group of committed financial and strategic investors to scale this further.”
The company will invest this round into scaling its operations to other cities across Nigeria, before expanding to other regions in Africa. The company will also look to improve and ease its processes and solve existing inefficiencies with access to more technological solutions.