Little CEO Kamal Budhabhatti is delivering food to customers together with some of the company’s employees as a response to the online delivery crisis occasioned by the ongoing crackdown on motorcycle taxis popularly known as bodabodas in Kenya.
On Tuesday, President Uhuru Kenyatta ordered a crackdown on bodabodas following an incident that saw a female motorist sexually assaulted by unruly riders in Nairobi.
The ongoing crackdown has since led to the arrest of more than 200 riders and the impounding of over 1,000 motorcycles. Consequently, this has paralysed the online delivery service which largely relies on bodabodas as a link between businesses and customers.
“To us, the customer comes first, we always do what it takes to ensure we meet the clients’ expectations even in the midst of a crisis by ensuring our services are available and reliable,” Kamal told CIO Africa.
According to Kamal, Little App Bodaboda Ride Category and around 50 per cent of the company’s delivery services, which include food, grocery, drinks, gas, parcel and other essential commodities were affected by the current crisis.
The App has over 500 merchants on the platform dealing with the above delivery services with daily transaction orders ranging from 700 to 1000.
To avert a similar crisis in future, Kamal says Little will partner with the government to ensure its riders meet the new compliance requirements.
“Courier drivers play a key role in the operation of our business. To avoid such a crisis in future, we are working together with the government in a partnership that will enable us to work with couriers who have fully complied with the regulations. In addition, Little has diversified its courier fleet to ensure continuity of services being offered,” he said.
Following the pandemic that came with movement restrictions, a growing number of Kenyans embraced online shopping. The sudden crackdown on boda-bodas caught both businesses and customers unaware as none saw it coming. As businesses contend with decreased online orders, customers who were used to online shopping convenience now have to go out to shop themselves.
The Kenyan government has given bodaboda operators has 60 days from March 21 to register their motorcycles, form SACCOs and obtain smart licenses for them to be in business.