Pay-as-you-drive electric motorcycles hit the roads in Rwanda.

Pay-as-you-drive electric motorcycles hit the roads in Rwanda.

Editor Wakesho

Tens of thousands of electric motorcycles, known as e-motos, are being provided to taxi drivers as part of a partnership aiming to boost e-mobility in Rwanda. The longer-term aim of the partnership is to deliver millions of e-motos to the roads of Africa.

Bboxx, a platform providing access to essential products and services, and Ampersand, an e-mobility company delivering sustainable transport solutions in East Africa, are partnering on the project to expand Ampersand’s e-mobility scheme in Rwanda.

Following a successful initial pilot in the country, the scheme is now being launched in Kigali and will eventually see the provision of tens of thousands e-motos (electric motorcycles) to taxi drivers in Rwanda over the coming years.

The e-motos will be financed by Bboxx using its asset financing AI model, with mobile payments managed using Bboxx’s Pulse, an operating system that streamlines Bboxx’s business operations. Ampersand will provide the e-motos and battery swaps.

The pilot is designed to allow taxi drivers in the Capital to use the motorbikes for their commercial activities at a lower daily cost than with petrol vehicles, an alternative option that could prove to be 40% more profitable, according to Ampersand’s data.

The partnership will help Rwanda towards achieving the country’s aims of reducing 4.6m tonnes of CO2 emissions by 2030 and becoming a carbon neutral economy by 2050, with existing moto taxis currently the second biggest emitter of CO2, the equivalent to 32% of total emissions from road traffic.

Through joining forces, the partners have the longer-term aim of delivering millions of e-motos to the roads of Africa, providing e-mobility solutions in Africa’s rapidly expanding urban centres.

Josh Whale, CEO of Ampersand, said on the partnership over half of all East Africa’s road traffic is made up of motorbike taxis, providing a vital and affordable public transport service and source of employment in both urban and rural areas. And nearly all motorbike taxi drivers require financing to acquire their vehicles, and our electric motorbikes are no exception.

“We’re also excited by Bboxx’s deep experience in structuring financing instruments in smart ways to tap into international capital markets, including the growing wave of climate capital. All this frees up Ampersand to focus on what we do best. Building batteries, expanding our swap network, building software, and building motorbike.

He adds with strategic partnerships like this collaboration with Bboxx, we can help Rwanda to become the world’s first country to electrify more than half their entire road traffic, closely followed by other African countries, and ahead of countries like Norway.