Following an investment deal of $1.2m investment over the last 12 months, shared mobility and transportation technology company, Treepz has announced the expansion of its operations to East Africa with the launch of Treepz kenya.
The launch of Treepz Kenya is coming just over a year after launching in Uganda and Ghana. Meaning, this is the company’s 4th country where it operates in three years.
According to a statement by the company, the new expansion follows investments made in Treepz in the last couple of months led by GIIG Africa Fund along with MoAngels, Roselake VC, Unpopular VC, Goodwater Capital and BKR Capital. There were also follow on investments from Treepz current investors including ShockVentures, Winston Limited led by the Lynch Brothers, Aston Investments and Novum Actus led by Clara Ogunsemi.
In recent times, Treepz has had a strong focus on vehicle rental service or what the company refers to as Business Treepz. This move has also led to Treepz Kenya signing up a couple of high-profile companies to provide commuting services for their employees or students. These companies include reputable firms like Twiga Foods, Abacus Schools, OAK House School, Diamond Trust Bank, with 20 big-name deals across Kenya in the pipeline. These partnerships demonstrate the growing demand for Treepz’s innovative solutions, especially with vehicle rental services for businesses, and the company is confident that this trend will continue as it expands its reach.
Meanwhile, speaking on the announcement, Co-Founder and CEO of Treepz, Onyeka Akumah, says: “We are thrilled by the addition of Samar to our team and the launch of Treepz Kenya in Nairobi today. This was made possible with the support we received from our current investors amid a turbulent 2022. Also, after winning the GSA African Award in Cape Town last year, we received funding from its funding arm – GIIG Africa Fund and that was also very timely for us. Today, our efforts are focused on building a centralised solution across the 4 countries we operate in and providing Africans with excellent mobility services, for their personal and business needs. We hope this will be the experience Kenyans will enjoy with our service and remember, as we build a world-class mobility business for Africans and the rest of the world”.
GIIG Africa’s investment into Treepz comes as the startup was named the Africa Winner in the ‘IndustrialTech’ category at the 2022 African Startup Awards – the largest independent startup ecosystem competition on the continent and exclusive vehicle for the GIIG Africa Fund to find, fund and scale Africa’s most innovative startups with Sustainable Development Goal-aligned solutions. In doing so, GIIG Africa now joins the long list of Treepz’s investment partners, which include the likes of Techstars, Google, Orbit Startups, LoftyInc, Niche Capital, ODBA, Microtraction, Crossfund, Uncovered Funds and Jedar Capital, among others.
While not as widely regarded as sectors such as fintech, mobility tech has attracted significant attention from investors in recent years. According to the latest ‘Africa Tech Venture Capital’ report by Partech, the vertical accounted for US$ 195 million (or 4%) of total funding for African startups in 2022 – putting it on par with health-tech (US$ 181 million) and ahead of the ed-tech and agri-tech sectors (US$97-million and US$86-million respectively). This figure is expected to grow as demand for transportation increases amid Africa’s booming population growth and rising rates of urbanization.
“You’ve also got to factor in transnational developments such as the African Continental Free Trade Area,” says Jo Griffiths, Co-Founder of GIIG Africa. “These policies will result in a significant increase in the movement of people, goods and services – and as such – there’s going to be an even greater demand in the coming years for mobility solutions built for the African context. As investors, we’re excited to be working with the team behind Treepz because we see mobility tech as a key enabling factor for Africa’s socioeconomic growth. For now, we look forward to supporting their efforts aimed at empowering Kenyan commuters.”
In a bid to fast-track the impact of technology on African growth, Griffiths adds that applications to the next round of the African Startup Awards are now open, with innovators from across the continent encouraged to apply before 26 February 2023, for their chance to receive funding from the GIIG Africa Fund.