Egyptian bus ride-hailing app Swvl closed an $8 million series-A financing deal with venture fund BECO Capital, Africa-based investor DiGAME and global venture capital fund Silicon Badia, according to a press release by the company issued on Monday.
Raed Ventures, Arzan VC, Oman Technology Fund, and chairman of EDventure Holdings Esther Dyson also participated in the funding round, which was the largest yet for Egypt’s tech startups.
“With this funding, Swvl aims to solidify its position in Egypt and establish the company as a global leader in the affordable smart transportation sector, offering fixed routes at flat fares that are up to 80% cheaper than on-demand ride-hailing services,” said SWVL co-founder and CEO Mostafa Eissa Kandil.
Hundreds of thousands of Swvl rides have been completed, hailed mainly by university students and corporate employees, since the company was founded in March 2017.
Swvl follows a network of 200 fixed routes in Cairo and Alexandria and charges a flat fare for all rides.
Riders schedule their trips by choosing pick-up and drop-off points, and can pay in cash or by credit through.
“Swvl intends to invest EGP 300 million in the local market in the upcoming three years to empower as many micro-entrepreneurs as possible in Egypt and the region and to become one of the biggest job creators in the country,” co-founders Mahmoud Nouh and Ahmed Sabbah said.
Kandil, along with Nouh and Sabbah, were featured in Forbes Middle East’s first list of Arab 30 under 30 last month.
Careem invested $500,000 in seed funding in Swvl in July 2017.