The market for tech-enabled transport in Egypt is tight: 13 companies are offering some kind of online ride hailing product.
All of these companies are targeting the same population: broadly, the 23 million or so Egyptians who have a smartphone, or about a quarter of the country’s population.
Those coveted smartphone users are not all in Cairo, obviously, and only a percentage (one we’ll leave to better mathematicians to estimate) will be able to afford and access these services. A smaller percentage again will be so inclined to use them. Still, if they’re developing new users rather than stealing each other’s, that’s a big market.
Finally, 12 of these companies are going up against Uber, which is already a world-infamous brand and in August 2016 earmarked 500 million Egyptian pounds (US$27.6 million) for Egypt alone.
Already the sector has killed off at least four. There’s not room for them all.
The taxi hailers
Easy Taxi (Brazil): launched in Egypt October 2013
Uber (USA): launched in Egypt November 2014
Careem (UAE): launched in Egypt December 2014
Ousta: launched March 2016
Taxi Plus: launched December 2016
Taxify (Estonia): launched in Egypt March 2017
PQ: launched April 2017
(We have heard of five others, but couldn’t confirm whether they still exist).
The bus disrupters
Tawseela: launched December 2013
Buseet: launched August 2016
Kalax: launched February 2017
Swvl: launched March 2017
The car poolers
Raye7: launched 2014
Go-Go-Car: launched October 2016
In 1853 Levi Strauss travelled to the California gold fields to make his fortune. He ended his days a millionaire - not because he struck gold, but because he sold dry goods, and then his famous jeans, to miners. The lesson being don’t follow the crowd, sell to the crowd.
Outside our array of 13 strivers seeking their fortune in Egypt’s tech-transport sector, there’s one Levi Strauss.
Wadeeny: launched in 2011 as a carpooling app
Today Wadeeny is an aggregator. It’ll search all the different apps for the best price and book your ride through its interface. It may not last - we can’t see Uber or Careem taking kindly to this. But right now it’s the One App To Rule Them All.
Are you using an app that’s not on this list? Let us know.
Faeture image via Wiki Voyage: Alexandrian taxis.