Kenyan electric vehicle (EV) startup, BasiGo, has reportedly secured more than $4.3 million in its latest seed funding round to accelerate the launch of its clean-energy buses in the country that relies heavily on fossil-fuel transit vehicles.
The startup, which debuted three months ago in East Africa’s largest economy, stated that it will be using the funding to set up an assembly plant in Nairobi and also initiate sales and delivery of the electric buses.
BasiGo has already constructed a charging as well as servicing depot near the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi and has also imported two e-buses for its pilot program.
The new investment round was led by Novastar Ventures, and saw participation from existing as well new investors, such as Moxxie Ventures, Third Derivative, Nimble Partners, Climate Capital, and Spring Ventures. The raised amount also includes the $930,000 that was raised in the pre-seed round last year.
Jit Bhattacharya, co-founder and CEO, BasiGo, welcomed the group of investors, who are greatly experienced in rapidly scaling businesses in the market, and understand the significance of this opportunity and urgency in making a meaningful impact regarding climate emissions.
Bhattacharya stated that with the support and knowledge of its investor group, BasiGo will be able to advance in its mission of making the region a leader of inclusive and sustainable bus transport.
Bhattacharya added that with the abundant renewable energy in East Africa, the market can pull ahead towards a clean and modern mode of transit at a time when African cities are emerging as the upcoming center of economic growth.
The startup is aiming at supplying more than 1,000 mass transit electric buses to operators across Nairobi during the coming five years and has also offered pay-as-you-drive credit options to drivers to encourage uptake, while also providing maintenance and charging services.
It will be locally assembling its EV buses, which have a range of around 250 km and are available in options of 25-seater and 36-seater.