Uber Kenya plots to double its fleet with a new driver loans deal with Stanbic bank

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Uber in Kenya and Stanbic Bank have launched a loans deal that aims to help driver-partners currently driving someone else’s (fleet owners) to buy their own vehicles in a move expected to double its fleet and reduce the wait time for passengers.

The financing programme dubbed the Vehicle Solutions Programme will see employed Uber drivers with a rating of 4.6 and above borrow loans worth up to KES 1,000,000. The financing is rated at 14% with a maximum repayment period of up to 36 Months. With more vehicles on the road Uber rides will be cheaper. There will also be few strikes as most drivers would be working towards their loan repayments.

According to Uber’s General Manager Loic Amado, “At Uber, we are constantly providing opportunities for driver-partners in Kenya. This is why we continue to economically empower our partners through Vehicle Solutions Programs such as this to ensure drivers start their own businesses so that they can make the most when driving with Uber.”

The partnership between Uber and Stanbic Bank is redefining the structure of lending in Kenya by using Uber rating and earnings over the last three months as criteria for providing hundreds of driver-partners access with financing.

Uber has so far enabled about 150 drivers buy their own vehicles and become owners of their businesses through a partnership with Sidian Bank last year. The company, in November last year, also partnered with Branch, a mobile lending company, to provide drivers under fleet owners who had acquired their own vehicles, with a starter loan of KES 30,000 to help them pay for their business permits, NTSA stickers and buy new phones and a data plan.

Stanbic Bank Head of Business Banking, Ben Wandawanda noted that this partnership is well aligned to the lender’s mandate to support entrepreneurs to flourish in their businesses.

“To make this unique opportunity as widely available as possible, the qualifying criteria for the finance is focused on the applicant’s proven Uber experience rather than his or her credit history,” Mr Jones explains, “and the primary qualifying requirement is driver’s earnings over last 3 months of KES 300,000 and an Uber rating of 4.6 or higher. We expect speedy uptake of this financing package, with the entrenchment of Uber’s services in Kenya” he added.

Uber and Stanbic also aim to financially upskilling the drivers to build their own businesses. Uber earlier this year partnered with Old Mutual to provide driver-partners with free money management workshops, so that they can understand basic money principles, develop healthy savings habits and plan a path to financial well-being.