The embrace of electric vehicles in Africa continues to rise. As the world moves towards a green economy, African startups have not been left behind. For years, America has enjoyed the persistence of companies like Tesla, Rivian, Lucid, Nio, and Fisker, who managed to drive the green movement in America in a way that has put America at the forefront of electric mobility.
Most recently, we have also seen how the Chinese BYD electric vehicle sales surpassed Tesla sales and how that moved BYD to the number one spot of the top-selling EVs in the world, a spot that has been enjoyed by Tesla for over a decade now. We are beginning to see a lot of changes that are signals of the growth of the electric vehicles industry.
However, Tesla remains the number one biggest electric vehicle manufacturer in the world, even though it has recently been surpassed by BYD in sales. Yes, Tesla is dealing with a lot of hurdles in Europe with unions, and this has seen the halting of operations in some European regions, this is going to continue affecting Tesla sales until it brings permanent solutions to its current challenges.
The rise of BYD is also symbolic of an overall rise of the industry, and this proves that electric vehicles are indeed making headway in the general automotive industry, and this progress will only continue if the prices of electric vehicles remain affordable.
The competition between America and China on electric vehicles has also opened a door for Africa to enter the race. Africa’s first electric vehicle manufacturer, Agilitee, saw a gap to enter the market six years ago. Today, Agilitee leads Africa in the global race and has been representing Africa as our bud of hope. Agilitee is a concept that was developed by Mandla Lamba in 2015 and commercialized in 2018. It has now become the reason why Africa is not left out of the global EV race.
According to global intelligence data, global ranking, and global tracker of innovative companies in the world, Tracxn; Agilitee is ranked at number 207 largest Electric Vehicles Manufacturers in the world. Agilitee has a total of 1221 competitors, and it ranks 207th among them. 69 of its competitors are funded while 35 have exited. Overall, Agilitee’s competitors have raised over $35.3B in funding across 255 funding rounds involving 589 investors.
There are 9 private unicorns, 25 public, and 10 acquired companies in the entire competition set. Yet Agilitee reached this status with no funding at all.
Agilitee is currently undergoing an IPO, which was delayed in 2023, and the company expects to have its shares trading on the stock market this very year 2024.
For Agilitee, this came with a big fight that the founder had to put up as he faced systematic challenges, it became a problem for Agilitee to operate in South Africa as a result of the founder being black and how the apartheid system was not ready to see a black person lead an industry, nonetheless Agilitee did it.
For the first 4 years of its existence, Agilitee had a problem establishing itself in South Africa as a result of apartheid systems that still control the economic activities of that country. The persistence and the consistency of the founder led to Agilitee turning South Africa into one of its playgrounds as the company has been able to roll out vehicles in six provinces of the nine that the country has. Agilitee expects to finish the remaining three provinces by the end of March 2024.
Agilitee is planning to roll out 50,000 vehicles on African roads in 2024. The company is busy with expansion into Indonesia, India, and the UAE, and the company plans to have full operations in these regions by the end of the second quarter of 2024. Agilitee remains the pride and joy of Africa, and Africa needs to see more of these kinds of beautiful examples that help to shape a cleaner and safer environment for generations to come. What Mandla Lamba and his team have done is proof that Africa has the potential to develop itself from within by tapping into the gifts and talents of many who are prepared to dare to make a difference for the benefit of all. The Agilitee story remains the most inspiring story the continent has read in modern history.