Vaya Africa, a Mauritius-registered company specialising in the transport of people and goods in Africa and the generation of adjacent revenues in this sector, has just launched a new fleet of electric taxis and charging facilities in Zimbabwe. The vehicles are called “Vaya Electric” and the ambition extends to the rest of Africa.
On May 28, 2020, Vaya Africa, a company registered in Mauritius, responsible for the transport of people and goods in Africa and the generation of adjacent revenues in this sector, launched a new product on the Zimbabwean market. It is the electric vehicles called “Vaya Electric”. The electric taxi network was developed by Zimbabwean entrepreneur Strive Masiyiwa, the president and founder of Econet Wireless, a global telecommunications company whose activities include mobile cellular, fixed-line, corporate networks, fiber optic cable and satellite services. The South African headquarters of Vaya Africa has acquired a series of Nissan Leaf electric vehicles and has developed its own solar charging stations.
The programme aims to introduce on-demand electric taxi services and offer services in their markets. It is being launched in Zimbabwe as Vaya finalizes partnerships to launch electric taxi and on-demand delivery services in markets that could include Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Zambia.
“These vehicles do not produce CO2 and do not generate air pollution when used. Our goal is to make all vehicles available on the Vaya platform electric within the next ten years,” says Dorothy Zimuto, CEO of Vaya Mobility.
The new electric cabs put on the road will enable Vaya Africa to save up to 40% on major fuel operating and regular maintenance costs, unlike conventional vehicles that run on fossil fuels. “The vehicles will require minimal regular maintenance of their electrical systems, including the battery and electric motors. These cars will also have stronger brakes thanks to a regenerative braking system, where the battery is charged in the event of a power outage,” says Zimuto.
Vaya Africa’s electric taxis will be recharged using solar energy and the charging stations deployed in Zimbabwe. These have been installed by Ugesi Energy, a subsidiary of Econet Wireless, to provide electric vehicle owners with recharging options in most parts of the country.
After Zimbabwe, a southern African country, Vaya Africa plans to deploy the Vaya electric vehicle in West and East Africa. “The fleet of electric vehicles will include passenger vehicles, motorcycles, vans, buses and dump trucks, all using our Vaya platform. This fits well with our vision of inclusive technology growth across Africa,” explains Dorothy Zimuto, CEO of Vaya Mobility.