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Emerging Tech

Bolt expands into Egypt

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Ride-sharing platform Bolt has expanded into Egypt's capital city of Cairo to compete with other platforms like Uber, inDrive and Careem.

Egypt is the second North African country that the company is expanding into after it entered Tunisia in 2019.

In a statement, the company said it will waive its standard 15% commission for drivers and give riders 50% off their trips for the next six months.

Competitors like Uber and Careem have driver commissions of anywhere from 22% to 33%.

Bolt said that it will absorb the discounts it gives customers and will pay drivers the total amount earned during a trip for the six-month duration.

Bolt said it will waive its standard 15% commission for drivers in Cairo and give riders 50% off their trips for the next six months.   (Source: Image by Freepik)
Bolt said it will waive its standard 15% commission for drivers in Cairo and give riders 50% off their trips for the next six months.
(Source: Image by Freepik)

Bolt Egypt Country Manager Haitham Mansour said Egypt was an important market and its entry was beyond merely boosting driver revenues, it aimed to ignite demand through competitive pricing.

"By keeping our commissions substantially lower than our counterparts, we ensure drivers earn more while presenting customers with appealing service fees," Mansour added.

Bolt's African expansion

The expansion into Egypt follows the company's February 2023 announcement to invest 500 million (US$530 million at the time) in its operations on the African continent over the next two years.

The e-hailing platform was launched in South Africa in 2016, and now operates ride-hailing and delivery services in seven further countries – Kenya, Ghana, Nigeria, Uganda, Tanzania, Tunisia and now Egypt.

Along with expanding into different African countries, the platform beefed up its security in Kenya. In January 2024, it introduced a new feature called "Driver Asked to Pay Off-the-App" to discourage riders from taking trips offline and paying off the app.

However, Bolt is not the only ride-sharing platform that has beefed up its security features on the continent. In August 2023 Uber South Africa launched an opt-in audio-recording feature that allows riders and drivers to record their trips in case of safety incidents.

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*Top image source: Bolt Press Kit.

Matshepo Sehloho, Associate Editor, Connecting Africa

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