Before writing this piece, we made a list of our highlights for the year, and we realised that our word for the year 2023 would be RESILIENCE. Resilience because, 2023 started with challenges, but we navigated through it with passion, finesse, mastery, and togetherness. The team stood strong and as usual, we came up on top! This is why we are sharing our highlight for the year.
The year kicked off strong with our partnership with Vesti, the preferred provider of legal and financial services for humans going global. All interested Vesti users got 50% off their first ride with Shuttlers, and interested Shuttlers users got a 25% discount code for travel advisory on ‘Education Pathways’. Another interesting partnership was with the ElectHER team, where we provided free rides for users to get their PVCs. Then for IWD, we partnered with Healhtracka, a health innovation company leveraging its seamless operations, digital technology, and innovation to improve access to seamless healthcare in Africa, to provide Cervical Cancer Test Kits at a discounted price. We also partnered with Nexford, to save our users money while advancing their careers. They got a scholarship that covered 10% of their tuition fees for 18 months.
Amidst all the amazing partnerships, Shuttlers also announced her raise of $4 million in equity funding. Such a great feat! The funding round was led by Verod-Kepple, a leading venture capital firm, with follow-on investment from Vested World, Echo VC, CMC 21 & Alsa, and SheEquity.
After the raise, it was essential to hold a retreat that would bring everyone on the team together and ensure that we were all aligned with the next level of the business. The retreat served as an opportunity for the team to convene, share ideas, and, most importantly, take time to refresh our minds and prepare ourselves for the work ahead with a renewed sense of mastery.
Another major highlight of the year has to be the Pilot & Her program developed to provide the daughters of our esteemed pilots with the necessary digital skills for the future. Shuttlers offered free laptops and digital short course scholarships to bridge the gender disparity in education and digital literacy. The initiative was brought to life through the most heartwarming campaign, where our pilots shared 60-second videos featuring their daughters, discussing their father-daughter relationship and their most significant academic achievements to date. These videos were hosted on a micro-site, enabling Shuttlers users to vote for their favourites.
At this point, we just want to get the dampener over and done with, and that’s the fuel subsidy removal. As expected, the removal of the fuel subsidy sent ripples across the nation, affecting purchasing power. The inflation and the exchange rate's impact further complicated matters. But as a business, Shuttlers stood tall, providing support to over 85 businesses and over 80,000 commuters to cushion the effect of subsidy removal in Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt.
In 2023, Shuttlers expanded its fleet by onboarding Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) buses onto our platform through our extensive network of vehicle partners. This initiative aligns with our commitment to sustainable transportation and affordable commutes. CNG buses represent a cleaner and more cost-efficient mode of transportation, which benefits both our riders and the environment. Not only did we increase our fleet, but we also added more routes and itineraries to better serve our Shuttsters!
We also launched the Shuttlers Next Gen Program, a three-week intensive program designed for graduate and undergraduate students that served as a prelude to a promising career at our company. Out of the 245 applicants who underwent a rigorous selection process, our inaugural cohort consisted of 17 exceptionally bright and talented individuals who embarked on a transformative journey with us.
The Partners Conference was another highlight for the company. It was the perfect opportunity for the Bus Partners and the team to come together to discuss our collective goals, future plans, and how we can work together to achieve them.
My personal favourite has to be the first Shuttlers Wedding Story between a former pilot and a user. Vincent met Dorothy when he was still the pilot responsible for her route, and their love story started from there. It’s such a heartwarming story that we are grateful to be a part of.
Surely by now, you should have started to see our Out Of Home brand campaign. This is a major highlight for us. From your favourite malls to billboards around the city of Lagos. If you see any such, take a cute selfie and tag us. We're spreading the word to make it simpler for everyone to discover the perfect Shuttlers solution for their commute.
Let's hit the brakes and shift into reverse for a moment as we unveil the 2023 Reverse - Shuttlers Brand Edition - a summarised effort of our users’ year with us, from the number of trips taken to the most frequented routes and even the number of CO2 emissions saved. Here you go;
-In 2023, we fulfilled over 1 million trips
-Plied over 1,212 routes
-Operated a fleet of over 789 vehicles
-Completed over 1,000 rentals across 40 cities
-Covered over 2 million kilometres
-Saved over 30 million pounds in CO₂ emissions
-Enhanced our app with over 10 new features
Thanks for joining us on this exciting journey! Now, relax and enjoy the 2024 cruise. We've got your back!