The digital transformation of Africa’s transport sector is inevitable

The digital transformation of Africa's transport sector is inevitable

The digital transformation of the transport sector has become inevitable, as it was one of the industries to be hit hard by the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic which affected the movement of goods and people

Countries adopted different measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 and today, as the tide is turning with the availability of vaccines, road and air travel is opening up more and more.

However, businesses operating in the transport sector are having to relook at their operations, especially the need to embark on the digital transformation of their payments. The universal quest for leveraging innovative solutions to accomplish customer satisfaction is typified by operators in the transportation industry who are turning to technology to alleviate the many pain points that affect their interactions with their customer base. 

As the mobile and internet penetration in Africa increases, consumers have a greater desire for on-the-go payment methods that put all transactional solutions at their fingertips. The majority of travellers now know that purchasing tickets online is not only more convenient but also far more affordable than buying over the counter. 

Regardless, a number of passengers still endure the stress of physical purchases and those who want to pay online still have trouble paying for tickets digitally. However, most businesses in the transport sector cannot fulfill their customers’ digital payments needs. Because of ancillary service fragmentation in the sector, most businesses today manage multiple Payment Service Providers (PSPs) who power multiple platforms. 

Five years ago, Kenya Airways partnered with Cellulant to offer a variety of mobile and bank payment options to its online booking customers. This was a first-of-its-kind payment solution that has now opened doors to digitization for the entire transport sector. 

In Nigeria, the company is deepening its digital payments platforms to cater for more than just airlines in the transport sector. Truck and bus drivers in Nigeria are using Cellulant’s technology – Tingg Proximity Pay (In store payments) – in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19, simplify payments between drivers and passengers.

Sike Bamisebi, Chief Country Officer, Cellulant Nigeria said, “Digitizing the entire transport sector is inevitable. In Africa, and reflected in Nigeria, there is a rise in uptake in digitization for Rail and Air travel, but Road remains the major means of transportation of many, accounting for over 60% of commuters yearly.  We have found that this is a great opportunity for us to digitize in Nigeria and expand our digital payments to all businesses and truly make an impact in delivering significant economic value in the country.”

Transportation is an essential part of human activity, and in many ways forms the basis of all socio-economic interactions. Indeed, no two locations will interact effectively without a viable means of movement. In many developing countries, inadequate transport facilities are often the norm rather than the exception. Thus, a good transport system is essential to support economic growth and development. 

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