Earlier this week, Bloomberg has reported that ride-hailing app Careem is planning to unveil a new affordable bus service to attract lower income customers.
According to the article, Careem is almost set to launch Careem Bus in 4 Egyptian cities, testing a possible roll-out internationally. The service is expected to come out in September “according to people familiar with the business who asked to remain anonymous since plans aren’t public yet.”
While Bloomberg reports that this will be for “low income” customers, at a time when metro tickets, taxi and ride-hailing fares keep rising in short amounts of time, Careem’s new venture may be a much-awaited new mode of transportation.
Careem also provided another different type of transportation this summer.
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“The people did not disclose how much the Dubai-based company is investing in this project, but indicated that significant capital has been allocated for it.”
The new move aligns with the company’s previous actions where they have provided various types of transportation according to the culture and needs of a country.
In an unrelated blog post, Careem wrote “Our focus is on making our service affordable for the masses and helping to solve the transport issues that we’ve seen across all our markets. To do this we have been diversifying our vehicle types across all markets because the tech infrastructure we have built can support multiple vehicle types.”
What is interesting is Careem’s sudden push into bus/shuttling services after investing in bus service SWVL last year. SWVL, founded by Mostafa Kandil, a former Careem Market Launcher, has been successfully providing routed bus services for over a year now.
This isn’t the first time this year that Careem is aiming outside of its private car-hailing services. Earlier this year, Careem acquired RoundMenu, an online restaurant ordering, delivery and reserving platform based in the MENA region. Read more about it here.