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JUMIA Partners With BILITI Electric To Add Electric 3-Wheelers To Its Delivery Fleet

JUMIA (NYSE: JMIA), a leading pan-African e-commerce platform, has announced a partnership with California-based EV solutions provider BILITI Electric. The partnership will introduce electric tuk-tuks to JUMIA’s delivery fleet in Kenya. The two companies have successfully completed the pilot project and are set to scale the fleet within Kenya in the first phase, and eventually across Africa. JUMIA’s marketplace is supported by its proprietary logistics business, Jumia Logistics, and a digital payment and fintech platform, JumiaPay. Jumia Logistics enables the seamless delivery of millions of packages while JumiaPay facilitates online payments and the distribution of a broad range of digital and financial services.

“Leveraging technology to improve everyday lives in Africa” is the first pillar of JUMIA’s sustainability strategy. “We are committed to building a supply chain that will minimize the environmental impact of our operations. The introduction of these EVs to our last-mile delivery fleet of 3000+ vans is an integral milestone in our journey towards realizing our ESG objectives,” said Juan Seco, CEO of JUMIA Kenya.

“We are thrilled about this partnership as JUMIA is a growing entity on its path to profitability. Last mile delivery costs account for 53% of the total cost of shipping. EVs help save on major costs compared to any internal combustion engine vehicle. We are confident of enabling JUMIA with much faster, cheaper and more convenient last-mile deliveries,” said Rahul Gayam, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of BILITI Electric.

 BILITI Electric’s Taskman variant is designed for commercial last-mile deliveries. The Taskman has a range of 100 km per charge, a payload of 500 kg and a top speed of 50 kmph. BILITI’s SmartSwapp technology enables the rider to simply swap the vehicle battery in less than a minute. The vehicle has covered a collective mileage of 22 million miles and has been used to deliver 24 million shipments across the all the markets where it is in use. The Taskman is currently being used by Amazon, IKEA, Flipkart (Walmart), Wasoko (Sokowatch), BigBasket (Tata), Zomato, and JioMart (Reliance), among others, and has a presence in 15+ countries including Japan, USA, UK, France, Portugal, Germany, Uganda, Kenya, Dubai, and India.

 

These electric tuk-tuks are a great addition to the African transport landscape. They offer communities a shot at cleaner air, help reduce noise pollution and also help to create significant economic opportunities. Delivery agents can earn more by switching from fossil-fuel motorcycles to these electric tuk-tuks, by delivering more orders at a lower cost due to their lower operating costs.

Kenya is perfectly positioned to kickstart an initiative of this sort. In 2021, around 90% of the electricity used in the country was generated from renewables, including hydropower, geothermal, solar PV, and wind. Kenya is targeting 100% clean energy use by 2030. This partnership is also an important step towards Africa’s progress in the e-mobility industry to achieve its environmental sustainability goals. Accelerating the adoption of electric vehicles on the continent Accelerating EV adoption is one of the best ways of improving Air Quality. For example, in Nairobi, a paper by Fiona Raje et al. cites that 39% of CO2 emissions in Kenya are from the transport sector.

The Kenyan government is working to increase the adoption of electric vehicles and has a target that at least 5% of all new vehicle registrations must be electric by 2025. 2025 is just over 2 years from now, and partnerships such as these ones will play a key role in the quest to achieve those targets.

There is also some work going on with regards to reviewing the building codes to ensure that all new buildings will be required to have electric vehicle charging infrastructure. Today Kenya Power, the country’s power utility, announced that it plans to phase out fossil fuel-powered vehicles and motorcycles from its fleet and replace them with electric vehicles. With an installed capacity of 3,077 MW and an off-peak load of 1,100 MW, Kenya Power has enough power to support the e-mobility ecosystem, says Eng. Muli, Kenya Power’s Ag. Managing Director.

Image courtesy of BILITI Electric

 
 
 
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Remeredzai Joseph Kuhudzai has been fascinated with batteries since he was in primary school. As part of his High School Physics class he had to choose an elective course. He picked the renewable energy course and he has been hooked ever since. At university he continued to explore materials with applications in the energy space and ending up doing a PhD involving the study of radiation damage in High Temperature Gas Cooled Nuclear Reactors. He has since transitioned to work in the Solar and Storage industry and his love for batteries has driven him to obsess about electric vehicles.

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