Bolt, the leading African ride hailing operator, today launched an innovative Accelerator program to empower drivers on an entrepreneurial journey, in partnership with the Nest Innovation Park (‘the Nest’).
Bolt will today open applications for the Bolt Den, a €25,000 seed fund available to support business plans developed by Nigerian drivers that link to its Africa City Vision, based around sustainable transport.
This will be run in close partnership with The Nest, whose network of mentors will support eligible drivers in developing their business plans before a pitch day is held in November.
To Apply, click here.
Bolt will simultaneously in November launch the Bolt Academy, a tailored online training program for Nigerian drivers to promote business development skills and support future career development.
The Bolt Academy online training will be provided by global leader Coursera and supported by in-person sessions with PM4Success International.
Together, these two initiatives will form the Bolt Accelerator Program, which seeks to redefine the journey of drivers as entrepreneurs and amplify economic growth prospects across Nigeria.
“Ride hailing has always offered drivers the flexibility to earn whilst pursuing wider career opportunities” – said Caroline Wanjihia, Bolt’s Regional Directors of Rides for Africa.
“we hope this program will take this a step further, supporting concepts that will transform drivers’ lives, make a real difference to communities and could even one day be incorporated into Bolt’s own operations.
She continued: “Drivers are the heartbeat of our business, and we believe that offering more developed economic empowerment opportunities makes our platform a more attractive place to come. It’s a win-win and we hope to take the program further afield in Africa.”
“At The Nest, we maintain a deliberate and discerning approach when selecting our partners and undertaking projects” – said Oluwajoba Oloba, Co-founder at The Nest.
“We hold a high level of enthusiasm for the Bolt accelerator program due to its alignment with Bolt’s commitment to the prosperity and welfare of its stakeholders, a quality that distinguishes Bolt from its counterparts”.
He continued: “This initiative not only promises to enhance the quality of life for individuals within the Bolt ecosystem but also to make a valuable contribution to the innovation landscape of our ecosystem and the overall GDP of our country”
“We’re thrilled to play a role in unlocking potential and nurturing entrepreneurship among Bolt drivers,”
says Hadi Moussa, Managing Director EMEA at Coursera.
“Through this program, we’re not just fostering individual growth with vital business skills, but also positively impacting Nigeria’s economic landscape. It underlines our belief in the transformative power of education on lives and communities.”
Bolt already runs a range of engagement initiatives in Nigeria, tailored towards building and fostering a deeper relationship with the driver ecosystem operating on Bolt platform. These initiatives include the Bolt Novelty Football Match, Bolt Women Summit, a Facebook group for verified drivers in Nigeria to connect, share experiences, and access first-hand information.