Uber has been looking to expand into African markets with low levels of car ownership and limited mass transport and this has resulted in the launch of the transportation service in Ivory Coast’s capital Abidjan.
This makes Abidjan just the 3rd territory Uber has a presence in within West Africa with Nigeria and Ghana being the two other countries.
Uber believes that before entering Ivory Coast, 50 000 people had already tried to use their app over the past year:
This means that for the thousands of taxi operators in Abidjan, there will be new clients for every single driver, in addition to the number they already have now
Alon Lits – Uber general manager for sub-Saharan Africa
The launch comes on the back of a 12 month negotiating period with authorities but Uber feels “optimistic” about the opportunity to operate in Abidjan -a slightly obvious thing to state since they are launching operations in the city- due to a few different factors:
With a population of about 4.7 million, Abidjan is a well-known commercial business hub and top global tourist destination, and the city’s ambitious plans for development and economic expansion make it a perfect fit for Uber.
Back in October Uber’s General Manager for sub-Saharan Africa mentioned that the company was on the African continent for the long haul:
Obviously being in this environment I can’t really go into detail around profitability. I can say we’re very committed to the markets we’re in and we’re not going anywhere.
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