Ride-hailing giant, Uber, has expanded its operations in Nigeria to two new cities namely Ibadan and Port Harcourt. The launch, which is aimed at unlocking growth opportunities in the cities, now makes Uber available in five cities across Nigeria. The other three cities are Lagos, Abuja, and Benin City.
With the expansion, more drivers will have the opportunity to earn, and more riders will have an affordable, convenient, and reliable transit service. Speaking on the new development, Tope Akinwumi, Country Manager for Uber Nigeria said:
“We are excited about this announcement as we remain committed to keeping riders moving and drivers earning despite the various challenges brought about by the pandemic. Using the Uber app has become a reliable earnings opportunity in Nigeria. We believe that Uber has the potential to provide an alternative source of income that is pivotal to our efforts to contribute to economic recovery and growth in the country.”
He added that Uber has plans for further expansion. “We plan to be everywhere. We want to be the option of choice for commuters, looking to get to where they need to quickly, safely and conveniently. With that in mind, any progressive, forward-thinking city is where we want to be,” he said.
Riders in Ibadan and Port Harcourt will have the option of choosing UberX rides. With this option, they will be given an upfront pricing estimate that will enable them to know ahead of time how much they would have to pay for a ride.
Uber first launched its services in Lagos in 2014. Two years later, it launched in the nation’s capital, Abuja, and in 2019, it extended its ride-hailing service to Benin city. With operations in just five cities in Nigeria, Uber falls behind its biggest competitor, Bolt, which currently operates in 24 cities, including Lagos, Abuja, Benin City, Ibadan, Port Harcourt, Owerri, Ado-Ekiti, Bauchi, Uyo, Calabar, Kano, Abeokuta, and Enugu.
However, while Bolt focuses on providing road services, Uber has diversified into providing waterways service in Lagos through UberBOAT —its boat taxi service in partnership with Texas Connection Ferries, a Lagos-based ferry transportation service, and the Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA).
Since its launch, Uber has provided earnings opportunities for over 20,000 active driver-partners, and through this expansion, more Nigerians will have a chance at economic growth.