Uber Plans To Expand To Tanzania, Uganda And Ghana In 2016

Uber Plans To Expand To Tanzania, Uganda And Ghana In 2016

San Francisco-based Uber Technologies Inc, a company that allows users to summon a ride on their smartphones,  plans to expand its service to three more african countries this year as it works to resolve some of the teething challenges it faces on the continent.

According to a Reuters report, Uber plans to enter Uganda, Tanzania and Ghana this year as it tries to quell growing revolt from traditional taxi owners in some African cities it already operates in by enrolling them on the ride-hailing service.

Alon Lits, Uber’s general manager for Sub-Saharan Africa, said the company, which already operates in nine african cities in Kenya, South Africa, Nigeria and Egypt, will seek to link up with existing taxi operators to prevent possible uprising against its own drivers.

Uber taxi driver operating in Kenya’s capital Nairobi have came under attack from other taxi operators in recent weeks, with cases of uber-linked cars getting burnt, wind screens smashed  or tyres slashed reported.

The taxi hailing company, which is considered one of the fastest-growing companies globally, has come into serious head wind with regulators in France, Spain, Netherlands and even in South Africa, where its drivers have been asked to get licensed as metered taxi operators.

Other region specific challenges facing Uber in Africa including underdeveloped infrastructure that lead to heavy traffic on the few available roads, high crime rates, and low use of credit cards.

A 2010 World Bank report estimated that poor infrastructure curbs African economic growth by 2 percent per year and business productivity by 40 percent.

The US-based company has had to innovate on its payment system in Lagos and Nairobi to allow users to pay by cash or mobile money.

Credits card penetration is still very low in Africa and in some cases like in Kenya it has been leapfrogged by mobile payments.