Kenya’s electric mobility sector is starting to get really exciting and gaining some significant traction. Financing facilities are critical to the growth of any sector, and this will be a key enabler for Kenya’s electric mobility industry. In a major boost for electric mobility in Kenya, we are now seeing some solid partnerships between financial institutions and electric mobility start-ups.
The latest deal in this regard has just been announced. Family Bank, the fifth-largest bank in Kenya, has just signed a partnership agreement with BasiGo to enable players in the public service vehicle industry to access flexible financing options. Family Bank’s deal with BasiGo Ltd, an e-mobility startup and financing company supplying electric bus services to sub-Saharan Africa, will see customers enjoy up to 90% financing, with an extended loan repayment period of 48 months for the purchase of electric buses. The deal will go a long way in the bid to reduce greenhouse emissions and support the development of a sustainable public transport system. This will assist in mitigating the long-term effects of climate change.
“This partnership is critical and timely in line with our strategic initiatives in addressing environmental and social issues through sustainable financing as we seek to support the climate agenda. Sustainable innovations such as the rise of electric vehicles offer a viable option for the market to help reduce carbon emissions. Through this partnership, we will be offering financing for a 25-seater dubbed ‘BYD K6 BUS’ that requires far less maintenance than diesel-powered buses with zero transmission of gases,” said Family Bank Chief Executive Officer Rebecca Mbithi.
“In addition to the zero transmission of gases, the electric buses offer better reliability, premium passenger experience through charging ports located throughout the bus, WIFI, a comfortable experience, silent drive, lower operating costs, hassle-free and reliable service and maintenance and an overall better driving experience. This is a total wholesome experience for the customers, the drivers and the operators,” she added.
The K6 Electric Bus from BasiGo is available for Kshs. 5,000,000, plus a subscription fee of Kshs. 20 per kilometer – Pay-As-You-Drive (PAYD). Through PAYD, BasiGo mitigates the risks to PSV operators by guaranteeing battery performance and providing all charging and maintenance for the bus throughout its life. The battery will be leased to the PSV operator via the PAYD battery subscription.
“Kenya is now in the middle of a transition to electric mobility. We have seen that the technology is viable in both the long and short term but allowing bus owners to secure asset financing for an electric bus exactly in line with how they have been purchasing diesel buses will be the game-changer that grows its adoption. Electric buses must be affordable to PSV owners. The partnership we have signed today with Family Bank goes a long way in achieving this as they are a chosen banking partner for many PSV owners,” said Jit Bhattacharya, CEO and Co-Founder at BasiGo. “With the continued support for this technology and BasiGo’s Pay-As-You-Drive financing, we have made electric buses more affordable and more convenient for owners to purchase and operate than a diesel bus.”
The buses, once charged, will have a driving range of 250 kilometers before the next charge at BasiGo charging depots that will be strategically located along the matatu routes. This allows transport providers to complete a full day’s operation.
This partnership is part of a growing list of banks seeking to provide financing for PSV owners who are looking to purchase green vehicles. It comes at a time when the Nairobi City County Government is seeking to float a green bond to build a mass transit system and supports the long-term goal of attaining the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as a guide to assist in the attainment of reduced global net human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide by about 45% by 2030.
BasiGo had been running a pilot with two buses for the past six month In just 6 months, the buses have:
- Driven over 90,000 km
- Safely carried over 112,000 passengers
- Avoided over 17,000 liters of diesel combustion
- Charged over 400 times from Kenya’s 90% renewable electricity
- Mitigated 42 tonnes of CO2e
- Demonstrated over 98% uptime
These numbers were from the 2 BYD K6 buses that are currently part of the pilot.
BasiGo is now scaling up its operations. BasiGo has already received orders of 100 buses! Exciting times ahead in Kenya.
Images from BasiGo
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