Nigeria's MAX.ng, a mobility startup that started out with using motorbikes for logistics, has announced that it has raised $7 million in funding. The investment round was led by Novastar Ventures, a Nairobi and Lagos-based VC firm, with notable participation from Japanese motorcycle and marine hardware manufacturer, Yamaha.

Other companies that invested as part of this funding round in MAX.ng include Breakthrough Energy Ventures, an investor-led fund backed by some of the world’s leading business executives, Africa-based Zrosk Investment Management, a regionally focused multi-asset investment management company, and Dutch investor Goodwell Investments’ uMunthu Fund, a €100mn inclusive growth fund for Sub Saharan Africa (via its West Africa co-manager Alitheia Capital).

“MAX is building technology infrastructure and financial services to make mobility safe, affordable and accessible to 1 billion Africans. This isn’t just about building mobile apps. It is about creating financial, technology and operating infrastructure where it never existed," said Adetayo Bamiduro, CEO and Co-founder of MAX.ng.

Rise of motorcycle transportation startups in Africa

Africa is currently experiencing a rise in motorcycle transportation digital platforms and apps. Several weeks ago, one of Nigeria's on-demand motorcycle app, Gokada, announced that it has secured Series A funding round of $5,3 million. In Uganda, SafeBoda has grown and even launched in Nigeria recently.

One of the reasons attributed to this rise is due to inadequate public transport infrastructure.

“MAX.ng is uniquely positioned to revolutionize the way Africans move whilst also empowering thousands of motorcycle-taxi drivers. By innovating quickly, we are thrilled to transform Africa’s mobility space at an accelerated pace,” said Chinedu Azodoh, CGO and Co-founder at MAX.ng.

Financial inclusion

Another interesting angle to MAX.ng and especially how it will deploy some of the funds it has just raised has to do with mobile payments. Not only has the startup stated that it will expand to 10 cities across West Africa including in Ghana and Cote d'Ivoire, but it will also be looking to deploy mobile payments in partnership with Mastercard.

Added to that, the Nigerian startup will introduce an electric fleet of motorcycles and deploy new vehicle categories, including 3-wheel tuk-tuks and water boats.

Share this article via: