Nigerian Ride-Hailing Startup Raises $5.3M For Motorcycle Unit

VC Investments

Nigerian-based Gokada has raised a $5.3 million Series A round that it will use to expand its motorcycle business.

Co-founded in 2018 by Fahim Saleh, Gokada has more than 1,000 motorcycles and drivers on its app that connects commuters to moto-taxis, and the company has completed nearly 1 million rides.

Rise Capital led the Series A, with participation by Adventure Capital, IC Global Partners and Illinois-based First MidWest Group. The company also announced that Nigerian investor and Jobberman founder Ayodeji Adewunmi will join Gokada as co-CEO.

Gokada will use the financing to boost its fleet and ride volume, as well as create a network to offer goods and services to its drivers.

“We’re going to start a Gokada club in each of the cities with a restaurant where drivers can relax, and we’ll experiment with a Gokada Shop, where drivers can get things they need on a regular basis, such as plantains, yams and rice,” Saleh told reporters.

Unlike other rideshares, Gokada doesn’t split fare revenue with its drivers. Instead, it charges drivers a flat fee of 3,000 Nigerian Naira a day (around $8) to work on the platform. The company also gives drivers a chance to buy, own and maintain their motorcycles as they earn income.

“We don’t do anything with the fares. We want to create an Amazon Prime-type membership…and ecosystem around the driver where we’re going to provide them more and more services, such as motorcycle insurance, maintenance, personal life-insurance and micro-finance loans,” Saleh said.

“We’re trying to provide a network of great services for our drivers that makes them stick with us, and not necessarily see a reason to switch to other platforms,” he added.

One thing the company won’t use the funding for: to enter new countries in Africa.

“We plan to expand all over Nigeria. We think it’s a large enough market for now,” said Saleh.