Kaivan Khalid Sattar spent weeks earlier this year driving around East Africa, deciding where to take Asaak, his Uganda-based company, next. Asaak, created in 2016, is a firm that finances motorcycles, gas, and cellphones for drivers of the region’s famed boda-boda motorbike taxis. Asaak was Uganda’s first online lender, serving the country’s estimated 1.2 million boda-boda drivers.
Sattar ended up launching his business in Latin America, where the company had no past experience, rather than Kenya, which also has a significant number of boda-boda drivers. Few were as taken aback as Sattar, who joined the industry through an acquisition.
“The rule of law is much stronger in Mexico than it is back there.”
“I’d never seen an African startup enter Mexico like this before.” It demonstrates the appeal of the Mexican market, particularly for fintech startups,” -Fabrice Serfati, managing director and partner at IGNIA, a Mexican early-to-late-stage venture capital firm.
Sattar discovered Mexico to be an excellent area for experimentation, with a more receptive business environment than Uganda, while considering the FlexClub acquisition. “The rule of law is much stronger in Mexico than it is back there,” he told reporters.
FlexClub leased cars to Uber drivers in Mexico and e-bikes to Jokr supermarket delivery riders. Though Sattar did not divulge how much Asaak paid for it, the acquisition provided the firm with immediate access to FlexClub’s 150 electric motorcycles, which were ready for deployment. (The Mexican Association of Motorcycle Manufacturers and Importers estimates that seven out of every ten motorcycles sold in 2022 will be utilized for work, primarily by platform workers.