Kenyan technology startup facilitates easy payment process for transportation


Countries all over the world are supporting digital transformation efforts to ensure better quality of life for citizens. Many startup companies in emerging markets like Africa are readily adopting technology-driven service strategies that will provide practical financial solutions for an array of daily activities. 

Kenyan startup, Data Integrated, have utilised mobile technology in Africa by “automating payment services through an integrated, reliable, secure and easy to use platform,” according to their website. 

Deploying modern technology

The Kenyan startup obtained funding from enterprise capital company, Toyota Tsusho, in order to enhance public transport capabilities in Africa.

Meanwhile, the public transportation in Kenya is largely made up of the Matatu, a form of privately-owned minibuses, which enables people to commute from one destination to another every day. This method of transportation is used by around 50% of travelers in the country.

Data Integrated (DI) collaborates with around 3,000 bus operators serviced by 80 devices under 40 Matatu cooperatives, according to their website, with a comprehensive bus management system and digital ticketing system. In addition, they have achieved 40% increased bus owner profits. 

How does DI help with localized transportation?

First: Once you put the tracking system in any new vehicle, whether a bus or car, the firm is able to schedule all the vehicles from one point then it builds the passenger app which allows customers to book their vehicle or trip from wherever they are. However, this has created a small issue because customers are provided with the all information for bus arrivals and departures in real time. 

However, the creation of mEpesi, an app that allows customers to access and view reliable public transport schedules in real time came into being. And Mapato was also created, a payroll solution for local SMEs, as well as MobiTill Epesi, a sensible public transport system to deal with operational challenges.


The other advantage of this initiative is taking care of drivers that have their own app which allows them to check if passengers have paid for their trip. 

In line with the containment measures for Coronavirus, the startup encourages and embraces a cashless system that pays not only while being on a Matatu, but also in markets, restaurants and elsewhere. “Data Integrated introduced the cashless system where customers are able to pay from their wallet or from their phone by using an app called “mpsc”, according to Mary Mwangi, CEO of Data Integrated.

For example, the app mEpesi implemented a digital ticketing system that eliminates the transfer of cash on buses mainly to decrease the probability of passengers getting robbed; technology that boosts community safety on public transport as well as customer service.