Nigerian shared mobility startup Treepz has raised $2.8 million in a seed round and expanded to Uganda with the acquisition of bus company Ugabus.
Treepz’s CEO and co-founder, Onyeka Akumah, said the funds will be used to rapidly expand the company’s on-demand ride-sharing and intercity bus ticketing services in Africa. This is already happening, with Uganda’s Ugabus becoming the company’s second acquisition of the year.
Ugabus, which was founded in 2016, now has 70% of all bus operators in the East African country on its platform, which has built-in mobile money technology for easy payments. The deal’s terms were not disclosed, but Ugabus will now be known as Treepz Uganda, and its CEO, Ronald Hakiza, will serve as Treepz Uganda’s country manager.
“Everyone at Treepz is excited to welcome the team at Ugabus to the Treepz family. This has been in the works for sometime, along with our deal that happened in Ghana a few months ago, and so we are really happy about closing the deal successfully. East Africa is an exciting target for Treepz and from Uganda, we would work with this new team led by Hakiza in Uganda to explore our growth plans across the neighbouring countries as we aim towards building the largest shared mobility platform in Sub-Saharan Africa,” Akumah said.
The seed round, which included new investors such as Japan’s Uncovered Fund, Dubai’s Blanford Capital and Jonomi Capital, and Egypt’s Jedar Capital, builds on Treepz’s $1.3 million raise in August, which was used to purchase Stabus, a Ghanaian bus company, and fund its expansion plans across the continent. Treepz has raised $2.8 million in the seed round.
Treepz is a digital platform that allows customers to book daily rides along fixed routes. It was founded in 2019 and was previously known as Plentywaka until its September rebrand. It also serves as an aggregator for bus travel companies in 21 Nigerian cities, allowing them to replace manual ticketing and servicing with digitalized offerings and services.
Takuma Terakubo, CEO and general partner of Uncovered Fund, said Treepz had impressed his team with its “remarkable traction” in the latter part of the year, and said the startup was poised for even further expansion.
“Treepz is building the most important mobility infrastructure in Africa’s megacities. The development of public transportation is essential in African countries where urbanisation is advancing. We look forward to their building the infrastructure for people’s mobility through digital value. As a Japanese VC who places importance on the mobility industry, we would like to provide a lot of value to them,” he said.