BuuPass moves closer to solving Africa’s long-distance transportation problems with $1.3m raise

Plans regional expansion to other East African countries
BuuPass to improve Kenyan's transport system & expand regionally with new $1.3m raise
From Right: BuuPass founders, Wycliffe Omondi and Sonia Kabra

BuuPass, a Kenyan B2B2C marketplace that offers operators a bus management system (BMS) to manage their operations, inventory, and sales, has raised $1.3 million in pre-seed funding.

The funds raised will be used for the company’s regional expansion growth as it seeks to provide the infrastructure required to redefine the African transport system.

Founders Factory Africa, FrontEnd Ventures, Adaverse, Gullit, Five35, Renew Capital, Changecom, XA Network, Ajim Capital, Artha Ventures, Daba Finance, Google Black Founders Fund, and several angel investors participated in the funding round.

Speaking on the investment round, Sonia Kabra, co-CEO of BuuPass, said,

The funding will enable us to invest in growth activities, increasing our market share in East Africa, with a focus on Kenya and Uganda. We will hire a team, especially on the growth side, and technology experts so that we can build systems for scale because our plan is to become a pan-African infrastructure for long-distance transportation.

According to TechCrunch, BuuPass aims to close the gap between bus companies and passengers while fostering order in the extremely fragmented industry.

With BuuPass, operators can use its bus management system to better manage their fleets and businesses, receive access to data they can analyze for insight, and reduce cash leakages while increasing their sales from online bookings.

Read Also: Making a Case for Tech-Driven Regulation in Nigeria’s Road Transport Industry

About BuuPass

BuuPass was launched in 2o16 as Magic Bus Ticketing by Sonia Kabra and Wycliffe Omondi after winning the Bill Clinton-supported $1 million Hult Prize.

The BuuPass team after winning $1M USD at the 2016 HULT Prize competition
The BuuPass team, after winning $1M at the 2016 HULT Prize competition

It presently collaborates with Kenya’s top bus, train, and aircraft companies to offer clients the ease of online reservations. The platform links them to its marketplace, where customers can browse, compare, and purchase tickets through various platforms, such as websites, mobile apps, and USSD codes.

In 2019, the company partnered with Safaricom, the parent company of the mobile money service M-Pesa, to facilitate train bookings.

Speaking on this partnership and its end goal, Sonia Kabra, co-CEO, said,

Partnering with Safaricom enabled us to land the Kenya Railways (operators of the national train grid) deal and validated our solution and capacity to build solutions for high-value transactions.

It also enabled us to build trust in the market. It helped us think about scale such that we have developed solutions capable of handling millions of transactions and providing a seamless experience for the end user. It’s been a great validation to prove our credibility in the market.

This partnership paved the way for BuuPass founders to notice the bigger gap in the mobility industry, especially among bus operators who carry out their tasks manually, causing a lack of transparency and mismanagement.


This collaboration allowed the founders of BuuPass to identify a larger gap in the transportation field, particularly among bus operators who do their duties manually, resulting in a lack of transparency and poor management. This led to the need to prioritize digitization, creating the bus management system.

According to TechCrunch, the company processes about 12,000 transactions daily and has recorded over 9 million ticket sales so far. It also supports a total fleet size of 1,200 vehicles from over 25 bus companies. In 2022, its GMV was over $30 million.

Digitizing transportation in Africa

Many issues have challenged the transportation system in Africa. One of the major issues is traffic congestion which is also associated with daily commuting, from booking to the actual movement of people.

As technology grows deeper in the continent, many fintech and problem-minded individuals have sought ways to solve this issue with digital means. In 2021, Interswitch, Africa’s integrated payments and digital commerce company, planned to contribute to the digitization of this process involved in the transportation of people in Nigeria.

Some other ride-hailing startups like SafeBoda and Easy Matutu are also looking to bring order and a healthy profit to this chaotic commuter system using technology. In a recent interview with Afolabi Olamide, Touch and Pay CEO, he further discussed how technology aims to make transportation more efficient, convenient, and accessible for people in Nigeria.

BuuPass is looking to create this solution for the Kenyan decentralized transportation system and even expand to other Eastern Africa with this new funding raised.

Read Also: Afolabi Olamide, Touch and Pay CEO, discusses powering transportation in Nigeria with tech on Techbytes

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