Uber, LASG move to solve transport challenges for workers
Barring any last minute changes, Uber is about to change the way Lagos workers handle their transport problems as it has partnered with the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF) to provide access to finance for budding transport entrepreneurs at 5% per annum.
This is 15% lower than any other financial institution. Access to affordable finance is critical to the success of any entrepreneur, as it frees up the cash flow for them to focus on growing their business. The introduction of finance at a lower interest rate for driver-partners will help them thrive as they run their business on the Uber platform.
Uber has particular relevance in a city such as Lagos, where traffic congestion is an ongoing challenge. Nigeria is a booming African economy. With rapid urbanisation come more people using the country’s roads. Lagos is an economic hub, which makes this challenge increasingly acute for those using the city’s roads. If more people take advantage of ride-sharing services like Uber, there will be less cars on the road and less overall congestion. For this reason, the platform has been welcomed and supported by the Lagos State.
General Manager for Uber in West Africa, Ebi Atawodi says, “We are encouraged by the Lagos State’s commitment to ridesharing platforms like Uber. Their support of local entrepreneurs not only fosters the growth of sustainable businesses, but strengthens a highly-viable transport industry in Lagos.”
Uber driver-partners in Lagos will also find it easier to buy their own vehicle. Driver-partners can now buy new cars that are locally-assembled in Nigeria by Stallion Motors (Hyundai i10 and Hyundai Grand Xcent). The partnership between Uber and LSETF has made this process simple. If they qualify for the financing provided by LSETF, Uber entrepreneurs can buy any new locally-assembled car up to a value of N3 million and only need to contribute 5% of the vehicle purchase price when they buy the car.
Akintunde Oyebode, the Executive Secretary of LSETF, partnerships like this provide a platform for sustainable job and wealth creation, and demonstrate a seamless collaboration between private capital and Government. “The partnership with Uber is proof of Lagos State Government’s willingness to support innovative solutions that solve social problems, in this case, transport, and also provide jobs to its residents.”