Towards the end of 2022, Uber began planning to enter South Africa’s townships. Soweto is home to a large number of Uber users, currently totaling 4.7 million. Nakampe Molewa, one of Uber Eats Sub-Saharan Africa’s general managers, shared in an interview with Sunday World that Soweto has a strong presence of formal businesses. Molewa stated that Uber is interested in participating meaningfully in the economic space of the townships. He also mentioned that Soweto was chosen to pilot the program due to its vibrant atmosphere and that Uber aims to target the youth and engage them as owner-drivers. Additionally, Uber has identified five other Gauteng communities as potential contributors to the growth of the brand, including Atteridgeville, Mamelodi, Kagiso, Vosloorus, and Lanseria South.
During an interview at Uber’s 10th anniversary in South Africa, Molewa described the milestone as a significant achievement in the country. He emphasized that it was an experiment for Uber to establish and prove itself as an economic driver. Furthermore, he addressed the coexistence of Uber and minibus taxis, calling it a long journey that requires moving forward to deliver impactful results.
Uber also shared its latest mobility and delivery products, including the launch of its first electric mobility product in South Africa. The company announced plans to transition its Uber Package fleet to be fully electric by 2023 and achieve its global goal of becoming a zero-emission platform by 2040. Uber is expanding its services to new geographies in the country, such as Uber Van in Cape Town and Uber Black in Durban. Additionally, Uber Eats introduced Uber Live, a mobile ordering solution designed to enhance the consumer experience in various settings, including airports, sports stadiums, concert venues, and music festivals.