InDriver, a Russian-grown ride-hailing service launched its operations in Kampala to face off with Uber, Bolt and Little Ride.
Headquartered in New York, InDriver offers only car-based ride-hailing services.
It was founded five years ago and its mobile application is currently used by over 26 million people in 200 cities across the world.
InDriver Uganda will be the company’s fourth market in Africa. Arusha in Tanzania was the first African city of operation. It then launched in South Africa, followed by Nairobi, Kenya.
In two rounds of fund-raising, it has raised $15 million from Leta Capital. Though quite impressive, its nothing compared to what its competitors have raised; for instance, Uber recently raised over $8 billion on its IPO and Bolt closed a $67m round. Safaricom-backed Little Cab is looking to raise close to $50 million to fund its expansion plans.
What makes InDriver Uganda unique
To gain a competitive edge, InDriver is not taking any commission from its drivers operating in Africa. This will increase its chances of pulling in more drivers.
The company told TechCrunch that it won’t be offering any other options other than car-based taxi services.
Uber and Bolt have expanded their options to include motorcycles in order to reach more Kampala commuters.
Another unique option offered by InDriver Uganda is that allows a driver to haggle with a passenger.
InDriver’s bargaining model works in a way that the passenger sets the price they feel is right for the distance they are traveling, and when nearby drivers receive a ping, they’ll choose to accept the fare offered, ignore the offer or bargain for a higher price.
According to TechCrunch, InDriver sees a value proposition for Africa based around urbanization, demographics and some of the unique characteristics of its platform.
“We think Africa is going to be a big market for us because there’s a lot of cities and high population [areas] that still don’t have access to ride-hail applications,” InDriver’s Chief Marketing Officer Egor Fedorov told TechCrunch on a call.