Uber, the popular car-hailing app has just launched its service in Kampala, Uganda’s capital.
In a press release by Uber, the company said ‘today, Uganda joins Uber’s growing African network With the launch of Uber, the innovative technology platform, Kampala joins the list of smart transportation hubs in Africa. Following the success of Uber in many other growing cities, Uber is excited to launch its ride-sharing platform to the people of Kampala.”
Alon Lits, General Manager for Uber Sub-Saharan Africa says, “We’re really excited to be launching Uber in Kampala, a world-class African city. We are inspired by the city’s rapidly developing infrastructure and spirit of entrepreneurship and look forward to giving people in the city an affordable, easy and flexible choice to move around the city safely and reliably.”
“At Uber, we are proud to connect millions of global citizens every to affordable and reliable rides. By offering a friendly and reliable complement to existing transport options, we can help improve urban mobility in Kampala. We are mindful of the city’s current traffic congestion, and we aim to be part of the solution in improving it, while creating new, fruitful opportunities for drivers. Ultimately, we hope to reduce the strain on the city’s roads, and minimise the environmental impact of traffic congestion that is part of a growing economy.
In a related development.Uber has just secured a USD 3.5 billion investment from the Saudi Arabia Sovereign Wealth Fund. Uber is currently valued at USD 62.5 billion. This deal will make Uber cede about 5.6% ,of its shareholding to the Saudi Fund.
In a reaction to the matter, Uber’s co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Travis Kalanick told Thomson Reuters news agency that the investment is a “vote of confidence in our business.”. According to him, Uber’s cash and debt as at now is USD 11 billion. The company is using this move to solidify its position in the Arabian and Gulf region.
The company will also be looking at taking on its rivals in South East Asia. Its major rival in China is Didi Chuxing, is woned by Internet giants Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and Tencent Holdings Ltd.