Uber has seen steady adoption and growth in South Africa, and the number of drivers servicing riders across the country is constantly increasing.
The business has taken off in South Africa despite the obstacles of regulatory battles and protests by metered taxi drivers.
Its food delivery platform UberEats has also expanded to new areas, most recently launching its services in Paarl in January 2019.
The local growth is in line with the growth seen on a global scale, and the company is reportedly planning to file for an IPO this year.
MyBroadband spoke to Uber South Africa about its success in the local market and its plans for the year ahead.
The company said that adoption of its services has been excellent across South Africa, with the number of users constantly growing.
“Our business is growing every day,” an Uber spokesperson told MyBroadband.
“Since Uber launched in South Africa, the adoption of the app has been amazing, new and regular riders continue to use the app to move around their city and drivers continue to drive with Uber for the flexibility of the app and earning opportunities.”
It’s not just riders that are using the app increasingly often, however. Uber said it had a total of 12,000 active monthly driver-partners in 2018.
When it comes to the uniquely South African obstacles Uber has faced – namely the protests and threats of violence from metered taxi drivers – Uber said it hopes to work with everyone involved in the local transport market.
“Our technology is open and non-exclusive, and we are keen to offer it to a broad number of taxi drivers to boost their chances for profit,” Uber said.
“In fact, many metered taxi drivers are already using our technology to boost their incomes and we would welcome more who wish to join their colleagues.”
The company wants tourists, business travellers, and residents to be able to travel safely – regardless of how they choose to get around their cities.
Trends and plans
Uber said it has noted the unique and versatile position it has assumed within the transport sector over the years, and this is thanks to rapid expansions, going to as many places as possible with safe and reliable transportation.
“Uber has become part of the integrated transport solution that has allowed passengers their mode of transport for the first and last mile,” the company said.
“We have noted that having a greater variety of transportation modes at your fingertips helps make it increasingly easy to live without a car or get to where you need to be via various modes of transport.”
“That’s why now and in the future, we are committed to providing safe, reliable, and affordable alternatives to personal car ownership by bringing together multiple modes of transportation.”
The company added that safety is a top priority since its launch in South Africa, and it is committed to investing in the safety of drivers and riders.