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Tesla watch your back! This Nigerian is building solar battery-powered buses that travel miles

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Africans are also raising their heads in the push for a greener world through technology as a Nigerian entrepreneur; Mustapha Gajibo has been converting petrol mini-buses into electric vehicles at his workshop.

Gajibo, who is based in Maiduguri, capital of Borno state in Northern Nigeria is now going a step further to build solar battery-powered buses from scratch in a push to promote clean energy and curb pollution.

The techpreneur in an interview with Reuters revealed that he is currently working on building of bus that could cover up to 200 kilometers in one charge.

“As I am speaking to you now at our workshop, we are building a 12-seater bus which can cover up to 200 kilometres on one charge.

“Before the end of this month we are going to unveil that bus, which will be the first of its kind in the whole of Nigeria,” he said, adding that his workshop had capacity to produce 15 buses a month.” Gajibo said.

While electric cars are becoming popular across the world they are yet to become trend in Nigeria and Africa at large.

The Nigerian Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo in February 2022 unveiled Nigeria’s first locally assembled Electric car – Hyundai Kona manufactured by Stallion Group and its subsidiary, Hyundai Nigeria.

Gajibo also revealed that shortages of foreign currency and high exchange rates are part of the challenges of his venture. The situation makes it difficult to import parts. So, he is looking to source them in Nigeria.

“We have been substituting some materials with local materials to bring our costs down and maximise profit.”

Electric cars do not consume greenhouse gas-emitting gasoline and do not directly create carbon dioxide. Although, it remains true, however, that CO2 is a by-product of the electrical generation needed to charge the car’s batteries.

Elon Musk’s Tesla is the biggest electric car manufacturer in the world as the demand for the eco-friendly product is increasing in the West but with giant stride like that of Gajibo coming from Africa, it will only be a matter of time before the technology becomes circulated and competitive. Hopefully, Africa will be a lead role in the move.

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Nigerian fintech startup, CredPal, secures more funding from Cairo Angels syndicate

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A Nigerian fintech startup, CredPal, has raised funding from the Cairo Angels Syndicate Fund (CASF), a micro-venture capital fund, to expand its “buy now, pay later” incentive to customers.

Launched in 2018 by the duo of Fehintolu Olaogun and Olorunfemi Jegede, CredPal has placed itself as one of Nigeria’s most preferred consumer credit platform that gives buyers the freedom to “buy now and pay later” and helps merchants acquire more customers to increase their sales.

According to Disrupt Africa, the Google-backed CredPal has over 85,000 active customers and over 4,000 onboarded merchants, with the company announcing in March it had raised US$15 million in funding to expand its consumer credit offerings in Nigeria and to scale across Africa.

While speaking on the new funding, Olaogun said:

“This support from Cairo Angels Syndicate Fund reinforces our mission to improve the quality of life of Africans through easy access to consumer credit.

“My co-founder and I are very pleased to have them as investment partners and can’t wait for how much we’ll achieve together.”

The Cairo Angels is Egypt’s first formal network of angel investors, and since its formation has been one of the most active early-stage investors in startups and high-growth businesses in the Middle East and Africa, with 31 investee companies across 18 different sectors.

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Nigerian auto tech startup, Autochek, partners with Kenya’s Pezesha to provide asset financing to African SMEs

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Nigerian auto-tech digital solution startup, Autochek, has entered into a partnership with Kenyan fintech, Pezesha, to provide asset financing to Africa Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

According to Autochek Kenyan Country Manager, Bilhah Muriithi, the company aims to build digital solutions that will enhance and enable a seamless and safe automotive commerce experience across Africa, with the hub starting with Nigeria and Ghana.

“Autochek has been focused on financing retail customers, we are excited to partner with Pezesha whose key focus is on enabling SME lending.

“Autochek will continue to invest in the market while exploring new partnership opportunities to deliver solutions for driving positive change in the automotive industry in Kenya and beyond,” said Muriithi.

Autochek, Muriithi said, plans to use technology to transform the automotive buying and selling experience for African consumers, by creating a single marketplace for consumers’ automotive needs, from sourcing and financing to after sales support and warranties.

Having expanded to Kenya late last year, the partnership between Autochek and Pezesha will enable SMEs to acquire auto assets for ease of business operations and growth.

Pezesha was founded in 2016 and has created a holistic digital financial infrastructure that connects small and medium-sized businesses to working capital offered by banks, MFIs, and other financial institutions or networks.

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