Bridging the Electric Mobility Gap: Watu Credit’s $1.3 Billion Commitment

When we look at Kenya, there’s no doubt that the journey towards embracing electric mobility is gaining momentum on a serious note. The move has been fueled by among others, innovative financing solutions as well as government initiatives. Watu Credit which is a known local asset finance provider has pledged a substantial investment of over Sh1.3 billion to propel Kenya’s e-mobility transition. Let’s delve into the details of this significant commitment and its potential impact.

Quick Summary:

  • Watu Credit commits Sh1.3 billion to finance electric motorbikes in Kenya.
  • Collaboration with manufacturers to tailor bikes for local conditions and establish battery swapping stations.
  • Draft National Electric Mobility Policy and green-colored number plates signal government support for e-mobility.

The Financing Initiative:

Watu Credit’s country manager, Erick Massawe, unveiled the company’s ambitious plan to finance the acquisition of more than 500,000 electric motorbikes over the next seven years. He recognized that there was a financing gap which has become as a major hurdle in transitioning to electric vehicles (EVs) and Watu Credit aims to actively bridge this divide. Massawe emphasized the importance of collaborating with manufacturing partners like Arc Ride and GOGO Electric to ensure that the electric bikes meet local road and operating conditions. Additionally, the company plans to develop a widespread network of battery swapping stations, addressing concerns about charging infrastructure.

Government Support and Policy Framework:

The release of the draft National Electric Mobility Policy signifies a crucial step towards formalizing Kenya’s commitment to e-mobility. This efforts are being spearheaded by a task force appointed by the Roads and Transport Cabinet Secretary, Kipchumba Murkomen, which aims to guide the integration of electric vehicles across various transportation modes, including roads, rail, air, and maritime. Murkomen highlighted the collaboration with the private sector, international investors, and academic institutions to build the necessary infrastructure for electric mobility.

Encouraging Adoption:

In line with promoting the adoption of EVs, the government has initiated the issuance of green-colored number plates for all-electric vehicles, including two-wheelers. These distinctive plates serve as a visual cue, raising awareness about electric mobility and encouraging more individuals to consider making the switch. Such initiatives, coupled with supportive policies and financing options, are expected to accelerate the transition towards a greener transportation landscape in Kenya.

Potential Impact:

Watu Credit’s significant investment and collaboration with manufacturers underscore the growing momentum towards electric mobility in Kenya. By addressing the financing barrier and facilitating infrastructure development, the initiative holds the potential to catalyze widespread adoption of electric motorbikes. Moreover, the government’s commitment to supporting e-mobility through policy frameworks and awareness campaigns reinforces the positive trajectory towards sustainable transportation solutions.


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