Egyptian Mass Transit App Swvl Moves HQ to Dubai
In a statement to MENAbytes, Mostafa Kandil, Swvl’s co-founder and CEO, has announced that the Egyptian mas transit app will be moving its headquarters from Cairo to Dubai next November. Since the Cairo-based startup already had a team in the UAE for quite some time, the change of locale is set to be as smooth as possible.
Kandil added that the Egyptian capital is to remain the startup’s base of operation and engineering center.
Swvl will not be the first startup to move its headquarters to Dubai, as it seems to be a recurring theme with startups from all over the region in these last few years. Companies and apps from Jordan, Egypt, and Morocco reach a point where the next big step is to move neighborhoods. Usually, since the Arab World’s Silicon Valley is in Dubai, most companies rarely relocate else where.
The Cairo-based transportation startup first came to the startup scene in 2017, connecting commuters through the capital’s many districts to try and provide a more comfortable alternative to public transportation. There are several fixed routes, with a new one popping up every few months to serve the ever-growing mobile application’s base. Users reserve buses and pay fixed rates at a considerable price after the trip is concluded.
Swvl has provided Egyptians with a comfortable and affordable alternative to all other transportation means out there on the market. And as a result, the company has raised more than $80m, with $42m in its last two rounds two months ago. In fact, owing to its rapid growth, the app has become one of the MENA’s best-funded startups. Some estimates put the company’s worth at $157m.
It all started in Cairo, but the app expanded throughout Egypt’s governorates, spreading operations to both Alexandria and the North Coast. Today, it is operating outside Egypt in Nairobi and Lahore. Sources revealed that Swvl plans to further expand in South Africa as well as Southeast Asia. MENAbytes reported two weeks ago that according to information revealed by one of Swvl’s investors in their financial report, the Egyptian startup is eyeing a $1bn Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) by 2023.
The startup has already opened recruitment doors for several vacancies in Dubai on their career website and aim to announce more positions when the relocation is complete in November.