Uber Celebrates 4 Years in Lagos MWorld FEATURES, NEWS The wave-making software company, Uber, disclosed plans of adding taxi pool to its range of products in Nigeria even as it commemorates its fourth year of operations in Lagos. The global technology brand shared this statement at an interactive breakfast session that had members of the media in attendance. Speaking at the colourful media event recently at the prestigious Protea Hotel, Isaac Johns road, Ikeja Lagos, Uber General Manager for West Africa, Lola Kassim, said that the introduction of the taxi pool will further make the cost of travelling on Uber cars cheaper as riders will have the option of sharing cabs or riding alone. “We already have taxi pools in some countries. I think it will be successful in Nigeria. It also gives the consumer more choice. You can choose to ride alone and bear the whole cost as it is obtained now or ride with others,” enthused Kassim. In addition to celebrating its fourth anniversary in Lagos, Uber also unveiled its new advert campaign tagged “Moments that Matter.” The campaign highlights creative collateral across different mediums like television, cinema, radio and digital. Speaking enthusiastically, Kassim noted that “When Uber commenced operations in Lagos four years ago, it was the 4th city in sub-Saharan Africa to be launched, and was already present in over 140 cities in 40 countries. Four years later, Uber is available in thirteen cities in Sub-Saharan Africa, and is available globally in over 600 cities in over 75 countries spanning six continents. That is the kind of expansion that is aiding urban mobility and bringing movement to cities all around the world.” Lola Kassim, Uber General Manager, West Africa The new Uber advert campaign was also shown exclusively to members of the media. Tagged “Moments that Matter,” the adverts were a mix of television, radio and digital collateral humanising the real benefits of using Uber around the city in a locally relevant way. Speaking on the campaign, Country Marketing Lead for Uber in West Africa, Margaret Banasko, said, “The key objective of this campaign is to re-inforce Uber’s commitment as a collaborative, supportive partner that gets customers to the “last mile” in more ways than one. Uber supports in moments that matter, whether it is getting to and from work, picking up your mom from the bus park, or even having a night out with friends, Uber is at the centre of establishing emotional connections and supporting personal milestones.” Responding to questions concerning what the company is doing to guarantee the safety of its customers and drivers, the general manager stressed that “safety is our number one priority globally and as such we have put a lot of checks to ensure the safety of our driver partners and riders.” Explaining, she said, “Through technology we ensure our drivers do not sleep while driving by making sure, they do not drive up to 12 hours without taking breaks. Periodically, we meet with our drivers. We offer them lectures and talks on how to resolve challenges they are bound to encounter as they discharge their duties.” She further explained: “We have a customer support centre that is open to our customers 24 hours. Within Uber application, we have channels for customers to request for help and we make sure to respond very fast.” She added, “We have a well-established process of dealing with the police. Recently, we launched the SSS call back line. As the brand continues to grow we will even add more security checks.” In terms of expansion, Banasko noted that they will like to see Uber in all the progressive cities in Nigeria. “We are always looking for the next place to go. However, we have to go where there is demand for our services. We hope to cover the whole of Lagos soon.” She emphasised that reliable service is essential. Talking about the challenges the company had faced since its four years in Nigeria, Kassim noted that “it has been that of providing safe, reliable and affordable service. We keep working to improve on our services.” As part of activities to reward its fans and customers, Uber Nigeria recently hosted lucky riders on an exclusive boat cruise with Uber Brand Ambassador, Banky W. The lucky riders, selected from a competition, joined Banky W and other celebrities for a night of fun, food and fabulousness. The event, which was hosted by the fashionable OAP Folu Storms, had guests enjoying an exclusive boat cruise on the Lagos Lagoon, with lots to eat and drink.