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Roam partners M-KOPA to make electric motorcycles more accessible

This is the first-ever large-scale supply agreement for electric motorcycles in Africa. (Image Source: M-KOPA)

Roam (previously Opibus), has signed a major supply agreement with M-KOPA, the fintech platform that provides credit and digital financial services to underbanked consumers in Africa, for the deployment of electric motorcycles

This is the first-ever large-scale supply agreement for electric motorcycles in Africa. The agreement will enable the credit sales of electric motorcycles, lowering the barrier to entry for customers through affordable payment plans. Roam will deliver the fleet by the end of 2022 in time for mass deployment in early 2023. This milestone supports Roam's vision of making electric vehicles more accessible to a broader market.

The fleet of Roam electric motorcycles features advancements of previous pilots, including optimisation of performance, effectiveness and robust design. The motorcycles can be used for personal use but are also appropriate for cargo transportation and taxi services. Additionally, they come equipped with a removable dual battery pack, lowering downtime and increasing rider flexibility.

By combining the power of digital micropayments with the Internet-of-Things (IoT) technology, M-KOPA enables underbanked customers to access a broad range of products and services without collateral. M-KOPA will aid in the deployment of the motorcycles through its innovative ‘Pay-As-You-Go’ model, which allows customers instant access to products while building ownership over time through flexible micro-payments. Working with M-KOPA will streamline distribution of electric motorcycles, and, at the same time, provide the opportunity to grow Roam’s market reach in regions across Africa where M-KOPA operates, starting in Kenya. This will enable customers to lower their operational costs by over 70%, which results in increased daily income by 50%, a boost that can fundamentally change the livelihoods of the drivers.

“This agreement is an incredible trigger for electric motorcycle adoption in emerging markets and validates our vision of releasing a locally designed product that exceeds the experience of traditional fossil fuel motorcycles for a similar price. We want to provide a compelling environmental and economic solution for markets that haven’t been part of the electric vehicle transition yet.” said Mikael Gånge, co-founder and chief commercial officer, Roam.

“The partnership with Roam aligns us with a major player equally committed to Africa’s sustainable development, and sees us expand our product offerings to include electric motorcycles, which is a true testament to the versatility of our fintech platform. At M-KOPA, we’re committed to lowering the barriers to entry and making everyday essentials accessible, especially to underbanked customers, through flexible payment plans. This rollout will have a transformative effect on the daily incomes of business people and reduce the environmental footprint of commerce, as it continues to grow in rapidly developing markets,” said David Damberger, managing director - M-KOPA Mobility and M-KOPA Labs.