Startups admitted to the Africa Transformative Mobility Accelerator (ATMA) held their first physical immersion trip in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi.
The startups from both Kenya and Uganda underwent a three-day’s immersion which involved site visits, networking sessions with mobility stakeholders, practitioners and enthusiasts, and also got a chance to do mock pitching in an event held at the University of Nairobi’s innovation and incubation hub, C4DLab.
“We’ve been able to interact with key players and stakeholders in the sustainable mobility space that is Shell Foundation, WRI, and TUMI who are very passionate about sustainable mobility. This helps us a lot because these partners are able to influence policy geared towards implementation of our solutions.”said Kazoora Michael Founder and Managing Director, QuickTap Uganda.
Chris Maara who is the founder of Nairobi based electric vehicles company Kiri EV said that the acceleration programme has been great because it has helped him interact and learn from other startups in mobility from Kenya and Uganda.
“It has been a great experience for us because we’ve met our counterparts in Uganda and the others from Kenya. It has been great feeding off their energy, learning about their struggles, their successes, laughing about the late nights, and also understanding each other’s fears in terms of bringing our product to market, raising financing, and day-to-day hustles of dealing with regulation.”
As part of the acceleration journey, Kenyan startups are set to immerse themselves in the Kampala innovation ecosystem as they visit their Ugandan counterparts between 24th and 26th March 2021.
Nairobi and Kampala are two East African cities, which have seen a tremendous increase in urban population, resulting in diversification and an upsurge in transport needs. Road congestion and air pollution have also increased, thus providing a huge opportunity for entrepreneurs to offer transformative urban mobility solutions.
The eight startups in the 2020/2021 cohort; Safarishare, Easy matatu, Zembo motorcycle, Uga bus, Kiri EV LTD, QuickTap, Ecobodaa and Smatbeba have demonstrated transformative, practical, well researched and tested solutions to urban mobility challenges in Kenya and Uganda.
Reputable advisors, mentors, and stakeholders in the startup and innovation ecosystem have so far engaged the startups in issues ranging from business development, financial management, customer discovery, and networking.