UberBOAT Dips Its Toes Into Nigerian Water
By CultureBanx Team
UberBOAT is testing its water taxi service in Lagos, Nigeria
A one-way trip will cost ₦500 ($1.39)
Uber (UBER -0.16%) as expanded its ride sharing service model to the water with the launch of UberBoat in Nigeria. Since traffic congestion has been an issue for a long time and the government still doesn’t have a full handle on the situation, taking to the water could prove to be a profitable and valuable solution. Perhaps this is a model the company could replicate in other densely populated cities around the world, as they look to diversify their revenue model.
Why This Matters: Nigeria’s water transport is gaining in popularity, which is why Uber launched a pilot test in conjunction with Texas Connection Ferries, a Lagos boat operator, and the Lagos State Waterways Authority. A one-way trip between Ikorodu Ferry Terminal and Five Cowries Terminal will cost ₦500 ($1.39). It’s a bit pricey, when you consider that in the West African country most people live on less than $2 a day.
The country’s population will more than double to 400 million by 2050, according to the United Nations. Specifically, Lagos has a population of more than 20 million, all of these people can be converted into consumers, which makes Nigeria attractive to foreign transport companies like Uber.
For a company with a market value of $52 billion and steadily declining revenues this could be one way to help buoy the bottom line, if this model can be replicated in other cities around the world. The company lost around $1 billion dollars in the first quarter of the year.
What’s Next: Nigeria’s underutilized waterways are seen as a viable transportation alternative to relieve pressure on the roads. In order to make this new service even more appealing, customers will get 50% discount on Uber taxis when used for rides to the boat jetty. Testing for UberBOAT will last for just two weeks and the boats will be available four times a day from 8am - 5pm.
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