BasiGo, an electric e-mobility transportation startup has launched operations in Nairobi to transform public transport bus owners with cost-effective electric alternatives to diesel. The startup will retail locally assembled electric buses using parts from BYD Automotive – a Chinese EV maker. The $1 million pre-seed funding will help the company actualize its rollout and be backed by investors such as Climate Capital, a Silicon Valley venture capital firm, and another climate-technology-focused accelerator Third Derivative.
BasiGo will supply buses of 25 and 36 seater capacity, with a 250 km range. After establishing a presence in Kenya, the startup is looking to expand across the East Africa region. Jit Bhattacharya, BasiGo co-founder and CEO has past experience in the field of electric vehicles having worked as CEO at Silicon Valley’s Mission Motors and also held a senior role in Apple Inc’s electric car project – Titan. Jonathan Green, the co-founder has experience delivering renewable energy technologies across Africa.
On the website, BasiGo describes the team as strategic seasoned entrepreneurs with over a decade of experience working and innovating with electric technology. TechCrunch article reveals that BasiGo will introduce a financing model that allows customers to buy EV buses at prices matching their diesel counterparts and offsetting the balance through usage-based subscription fees. The pilot program will commence later in the year on the arrival of their first bus.
Other electric mobility makers in the Kenya market are Opibus and NopeaRide – which are also setting up charging hubs across the capital. Both companies have attracted huge investments to increase their offerings.
Main Image: Afrik21