Recently, we reported that bike-hailing startup, Gokada had fired up to 70% of its staff. The decision to sack about 7,000 of its workers came just 2 days after a ban on motorcycle and tricycles was implemented by the Lagos state government.
The report, which first emerged as a rumour was eventually confirmed by Gokada CEO, Fahim Saleh when he responded to a Techpoint post on the matter.
Fahim, while still hoping for a resolution of the issue, noted that the company would be shifting its focus to logistics, last mile deliveries and dispatch riding pending while the ban/restriction is on.
Technext reached out to him to confirm the actionable steps the startup is currently taking.
In his response Gokada CEO, Fahim Saleh, pointed out that the startup is currently not in direct talks with the government. However they are speaking through intermediaries.
“We aren’t in direct communication with government. But we are speaking though intermediaries,” Fahim told TechNext.
This will come as a relief to individuals who have raised concerns about the startup’s ‘social media campaign’. One such campaign included a video by Fahim where, looking distraught, he lamented the death of innovation and investments that the ban has caused.
In the immediate however, pending the resolution of the issue between both parties, Gokada is actively taking steps to fill in the gap through logistics operations.
According to Fahim, the startup is currently working on a new app, outside its default Gokada app, for deliveries.
“We are creating a new app quickly for deliveries.”Fahim Saleh
This in the immediate is a smart move by the startup to utilise its vast array of resources (bikes). The Lagos State Road Traffic Law 2012, only outlawed the use of motorcycles below 200CC from operating on hundreds of roads in Lagos within the state metropolis.
And while the recent rule is no respecter of the fact that bike-hailing startups utilise bikes above the stipulated range, stating safety and security concerns as basis for the ban, it exempts logistics services and dispatch riders from the restriction (as long as their bikes are above 200CC).
Already, fellow bike-hailing startup, Max.ng has its dispatch line of operations. Thus, this latest move would see Gokada joining Max.ng and other players in that line, as competition is bound to become stiffer.
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