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Shuttlers raises $4m to expand shared mobility in Nigeria


Shuttlers, a Nigerian shared mobility company that allows individual and corporate passengers to take rides on multiple bus routes via an app, has raised $4 million in a new funding round led by Verod-Kepple Africa Ventures (VKAV), a Pan-African-focused venture capital firm.

The round welcomed participation from follow-on investors, including VestedWorld, which led the mobility startup’s $1.6 million round 18 months ago. SheEquity, CMC 21 & Alsa, and EchoVC are the startup’s other backers in this round, which has seen the mobility company secure over $5.6 million in total venture backing.

Shuttlers’ seed round, which the company secured after bootstrapping for four years and processing over $1 million in transactions, afforded it room to improve its tech, Damilola Olokesusi, co-founder and ceo of Shuttlers, told TechCrunch.

“This additional financing secured by the 55-man team will help build infrastructure to power its mass transit business, enable employee transportation for more corporates and increase market share in a space that includes Techstars-backed Treepz as it expands to other cities within Nigeria. It will also ramp up hiring in its sales, marketing and customer support departments,” Olokesusi said.

“Before our first funding, when we didn’t do marketing and PR, I think we had the highest market share in bus hailing and sharing space. But now, there’s no doubt that we are miles apart from the competition, in terms of the number of customers, the technology and routes.

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“We have built an infrastructure that allows us to expand into different geographies within and outside Nigeria and supports multiple stakeholders, from partners and drivers to marshals and administrative bodies. Our main focus is to take over the bus-sharing space and be this huge startup that, you know, is very profitable,” Olokesusi said.

Olokesusi added that the startup intends to expand to five other cities across the country by next year.

Shuttlers’ business primarily focuses on corporate trips and commutes, with Shuttlers, employees can book seats on one of the buses along predetermined and scheduled routes. Its other features include live bus tracking, optimal routing based on traffic, digital payments, and ride schedules.

Since it invested in its seed round in November 2021, Shuttlers has increased its momentum. The Lagos-based startup initially ran 30 routes across the metropolis on more than 100 buses. According to Olokesusi, today there are nearly 260 buses that travel 300 lines every day between Lagos and Abuja.