Bridge Taxi Finance (“Bridge Taxi”), a Mokoro Holdings subsidiary, is a development company offering finance and support products to the minibus taxi industry in South Africa. This includes strategic investments and associations in various industries supporting the developmental finance chain, from taxi finance to logistics, credit solution services, supply of parts, and vehicle servicing.
South Africa’s taxi industry plays a vital role in the country’s economy, accounting for over 70% of all public transport trips, and is the most widely used form of public transport in Africa. The EUR 10 million facility from Triodos Investment Managers is an introduction and a part of a strong pipeline of international development finance and impact investors looking to join hands in financing Bridge Taxi Finance. The recent funding is part of the Common Terms Agreement (CTA) structure created for international impact investors to standardize and simplify security sharing among like-minded investors.
Bridge Taxi’s clients, the drivers, are entrepreneurs running/ owning a taxi business. The company is currently financing over 4 700 entrepreneurs. Over 15 million South Africans make use of minibus taxis to get to and from work every day. Bridge Taxi finances financially excluded individuals and provides them with an opportunity to own income-generating assets, enabling them to contribute positively to the economy. With an estimated 250 000-280 000 minibus taxis operating in the country’s formal routes, there is a significant monthly supply gap for minibus taxis. Bridge Taxi is addressing this supply gap by importing new, safer vehicles, which meet EURO IV and V emissions standards. These new vehicles imported are replacing the old fleet which has higher carbon emissions and is dangerous to public safety and the environment. Bridge Taxi has plans to offer electric vehicles in the coming years, and feasibility studies have already commenced. Bridge Taxi is majority owned by the founders who have more than 20 years of experience in development finance.
The transaction is the first introduction of a simplified and seamless investment structure for international impact investors into the inclusive finance sector in South Africa. Verdant Capital is continuing to work with Bridge Taxi Finance as its sole advisor to bring in longer-term international capital.