People, places and parcels, Tranzit is Africa’s taxi app on steroids


Unlike most taxi app services these days, Tranzit not only offers you transportation but also parcel delivery and enables you to locate relevant places and events based on your location via the web. Hailing from Lagos, Nigeria, Tranzit puts people a few taps away from a licensed, reviewed transportation and delivery pickup service and plans to revolutionise transportation in Africa and beyond.

Before Tranzit, however, there was Taxipark, a run-of-the-mill taxi web and mobile app that helps you find and book transport in Lagos. Proudly walking away as winner of the Mobile Web West Africa 2013 competition, the founders still wanted more and felt very “limited and restricted”.

And so Tranzit was born.

On top of it being a taxi booking app, certain features such as the parcel and passenger transportation services are only some of what makes it exceptional. It also offers a car hire service where you can book a vehicle for either six or twelve hours. The app also allows you to explore the city by introducing location-based discovery features.

It not only shows you new places, it gets you to them. Via GPS the app locates your surrounding restaurants, hotels or local attractions. This would be extremely helpful to tourists getting lost in Africa’s busiest city and home to over 20 million people.

All in all, Tranzit would be best described as a taxi app on steroids.

While Tranzit’s Angel investor wishes to remain silent, the startup is currently valued at around half a million US dollars. The current shareholders include Boris Muyiwa, Rodney Jackson Cole and Ugochi Nicole Ugbomeh — the same dream team behind Taxipark.

Tranzit’s target market? The millions of Nigerians who are familiar with the internet and keen to put safety and convenience first when booking a taxi. Apart from having a massive growing market, Nigeria is also extremely complex. Tranzit is thus responding in many ways, serving all the different market dynamics.

The team explains that “in Lagos, when a cab is booked and the driver gives a quote (N4000), the passenger has in most cases been standing in the sun looking for a cab. Now, along the line, the driver realises that there’s traffic, and starts moaning about it. When they reach the destination the price is now N6000. This results in unnecessary conflict.”

Scenarios such as this do not happen with Tranzit. Prices are said to be kept cheap, clean and transparent. “The quotes seen on the site or app are final. The passenger will pay nothing more regardless of traffic,” Ugbomeh says.

Apart from keeping prices cheap and fair, the company also wants to keep their customers as safe as possible. This is partly done by using a rating system where delivery errands are awarded to the most reputable drivers. As described on the website, “Our drivers are security vetted and regularly assessed and rated for safety, reliability and proper conduct. You receive verified driver details before the taxi or car hire arrives at your scheduled location.”

Tranzit discover

Driving all the way from Brazil, Easy Taxi last year expanded to Nigeria. Backed by Rocket Internet, the company has over 1.5-million app downloads in total and more than 45,000 taxi drivers in the network.

Asked about what sets Tranzit apart from the competition, the startup argues that its local knowledge and experience will keep it ahead in the race: “We came first. As a result of this, we have been able to study the market extensively and have a profound understanding of the transportation industry, especially the taxi business, thereby allowing us to identify and satisfy the needs of the market.”

Tranzit is trying to fill the gap of convenience and affordability and in the process, create more jobs for drivers. “We are bringing a revolution to the transportation industry in Nigeria. We will be rapidly expanding to other major cities in the country, and key countries across Africa,” Ugbomeh tells Ventureburn.

The Tranzit team says it’s building an African solution to mobility and hopes to share it with the rest of the world. Whether it’s people, places or parcels, Tranzit hopes to become the first thing people think about when they want something moved from point A to point B.

The app is available for free via Google Play, Blackberry App World or simply visit the website.

Jacques Coetzee: Staff Reporter


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