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Innoson Motors Debuts Ride-hailing Service in Enugu, Plans to Offer Hire-Purchase

Tunbosun Oyinloye

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Innoson Motors Debuts Ride-hailing service in Enugu, Plans to Offers Hire-Purchase

Indigenous car manufacturer – Innoson Vehicle Motors (IVM) – plans to launch its ride-hailing service, IVM-Connect.

Disclosed via the company’s official Twitter page, IVM seeks to employ professional drivers.

The service is expected to kick off in Enugu State sometimes early October. 

As such, IVM intends to roll out about 200 of its vehicles towards that end.

IVM-Connect, although largely considered as a CSR initiative, will boost employment in the State. 

Not just that, it will also address the lapses in the State’s transportation sector.

Innoson Motors Debuts Ride-hailing service in Enugu

Source: NaijaTechGuide

In the future, IVM also plans to expand to the other Eastern States, including Owerri. 

To that end, it will provide about 5000 vehicles in the coming months.

However, it’s still unclear whether the service will also make a debut in Lagos State.

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Operational model

Being an auto-maker, IVM plans to offer its custom-made vehicles at hire-purchase for interested drivers.

Towards that end, IVM’s head of corporate communication, Cornel Osigwe revealed that;

“The first batches of IVM-branded hatchback cars will be distributed to registered operators in the first week of October.”

Unlike other e-taxi models, interested IVM-connect drivers can pay to own their cars.

This payment will, however, be made by instalments within two years, similar to OPay’s Bike-hailing model. 

The most significant similarity with existing e-taxi models is the dedicated ride-hailing mobile app- IVMCruise.

IVM-Connect vs. others

Populated with prominent competitors like Uber and Bolt, Enugu is a highly competitive market for new entrants.

Oma and RideOn are two existing indigenous players that IVM-Connect will also rival with upon launch.

These key players, however, use a similar business model slightly different from the incoming IVM-Connect.

Also, IVM business model appears more sustainable, plus it offers substantial long-term advantages.

If it sticks to its word, IVM-Connect will undoubtedly disrupt the State’s transportation sector.

Predominant challenges in the Enugu ride-hailing sector

Currently, partner-drivers of existing ride-hailing services in Enugu often have to struggle with excessive policies by operators and the Government.

Not to talk of other predominant challenges like poor road networking.

In a recent development, Bolt drivers in Enugu wrote to Bolt management.

Innoson Motors Debuts Ride-hailing service in Enugu

Source: The Nigeria Insider

In the letter, Bolt drivers via the National Union of Professional App-Based Workers (NUPAW) outlined their concerns.

Concerns raised include deliberate disbursement of “close-to-zero charges and ride-promos” at drivers’ expenses.

Also, issues of “passenger disrespect, terrible road network, excessive interference of law enforcement agents,” among others were addressed.

The Union further requested an increase in base price charges to N320. 

They also want per kilometre, and per-minute charges increased to N72 and N14, respectively.

The letter addressed to Bolt, the 10th of August, hasn’t been responded to yet.

Incoming IVM-Connect, on the other hand, can find a better approach to address these predominant challenges.

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These challenges are not exclusive to Enugu State alone

Most of these challenges are common in other states where e-taxi is operational.

In most cases, e-taxi drivers bear the cost of miscellaneous spending or promos by operators.

The State Government, in other cases, rolls out unfavourable/excessive policies. 

And the drivers are usually at the receiving end of these policies.

Recently, e-taxi drivers in Lagos State embarked on a week-long strike.

This was to express their grievances toward the State’s new guidelines.

It is important that IVM puts these concerns into consideration ahead of launch if they want to successfully disrupt the industry with their unique model.

ALSO READ: Lagos State Heeds to Outburst, Revises e-Taxi Regulations

In conclusion

Nigeria’s transportation sector is continuously evolving. 

It is important that necessary measures are checked to ensure seamless co-participation.

Are you pleased to hear about the launch of another indigenous product?

Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Oyinloye Bosun is a writer at Techuncode. Although not a gadget freak, he has a keen interest in familiarizing himself with every technology product - software or hardware. He also loves to arm himself with the knowledge of tech activities/events taking place both on the Local and International scenes. The provision of the above has pushed him to choose writing as a profession. Wondering if he has a hubby? Yes! He loves streaming tech-related podcasts in his spare time.

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