Nigerian on-demand motorcycle taxi startup Gokada raises $5.3m Series A funding

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Lagos-based on-demand motorcycle taxi app Gokada has secured US$5.3 million in Series A funding as it plans to expand its driver fleet, increase its daily ride numbers and grow its team.

Formed in February 2018, transport solution Gokada allows customers to order a motorcycle ride via its website or app. In its 14 months of operation, the startup has secured close to 1,000 bikes and completes around 5,000 rides across Lagos’ Mainland each day, with rides approaching one million in total.

Disrupt Africa reported in March the startup was planning a big year of expansion after moving into new offices and launching a driver training school, and it has now secured a Series A investment round of US$5.3 million.

Led by Rise Capital with participation from Adventure Capital, First MidWest Group, IC Global Partners and several local investors, the round will assist Gokada in expanding its fleet of drivers, with the goal of increasing the number of daily rides 10-fold.  It also plans to acquire more local tech talent, explore new verticals for business growth, and provide more value added services to drivers.

“Our green Gokada motorcycles have become a regular feature of Lagos’ roads in the 14 months since our official launch. Gokada was built with the intention of becoming the future of two-wheel transport in West Africa, and we are fast becoming the go-to platform to hail a motorcycle ride in Lagos. Today’s announcement allows us to accelerate our growth projections significantly, as we continue to grow our market share and look to introduce more product features and services,” said Fahim Saleh, co-founder and co-CEO of Gokada.

Ayodeji Adewunmi, director at Rise Capital and the co-founder and former CEO of Jobberman, is joining Gokada as Co-CEO, with former CEO Deji Oduntan stepping down from his role at the company as part of the funding round.

“It is an incredible time to be joining Gokada on this journey to transform transportation in Nigeria and the rest of Africa. I am truly excited about the promise of Gokada becoming the operating system of how cities function optimally and efficiently across Africa. There is no doubt in my mind that this will become one of the most important companies in Africa,” Adewumni said.

Nazar Yasin, founder and managing partner at Rise Capital, said Gokada’s rapid entry into Lagos’ transport market had been transformative.

“We have noticed that some markets like Nigeria and Indonesia, which both have large populations and inadequate road infrastructure, are more likely to be dominated by motorcycle-hailing companies rather than traditional car-hailing players, and Gokada’s relentless focus on product, customer service, and safety has enabled them to take advantage of this dynamic and produce some truly impressive growth metrics. They are reshaping the tech-enabled transport market in Lagos, and we are excited to be partnering with them as they scale,” he said.

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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