Kenya’s transportation sector which is most entirely dependent on fossil fuels is undergoing significant technological developments that have not only reduced costs but have also reduced the environmental pollution footprint and increased utility.
This is after a regional leasing firm, Vehicle and Equipment Leasing Limited (VAELL), rolled out electric and solar-powered automobiles in the country.
The firm is involved in leasing and selling new solar electric-powered automobiles dubbed ‘Utu’ distributed by its partner brand It’s Electric Limited which is a dealer of modern electric vehicles (EVs) and charging stations.
This comes in as the Kenyan government seeks to introduce electric bus units for the Nairobi capital BRT system.
The leasing firm has already installed solar and electric vehicle charging stations in various hubs, more notably a new charging port at the Buffalo Mall in Naivasha, where the lessor is headquartered. Naivasha is renowned worldwide as Eastern and Central Africa’s clean energy town with renewable electricity at its peak in the region.
The firm is set to install more solar and electric charging stations in various places around the country for public conveniences such as residential buildings and shopping malls.
Speaking while receiving the recent batch of electric and solar automobiles that included saloon cars, Motorcycle and Tuk-tuks from China, the firm’s Head of Finance, Ms. Catherine Mutua said that the contest against environmental pollution is of uttermost urgency, needing environmental vanguards ready to go the extra mile at this initial adoption and transition phase.
“As we are setting the pace and leading the way, we are planning to invest at least Ksh2 billion in the next few years to spur the uptake of EVs, especially through our asset finance programs,” she said.
“As we speak we have already injected Ksh100 million in the importation of the eco-friendly automobiles and some have already been shipped and are in our yards ready for uptake.”
Ms Mutua noted that the company is looking to have about 2,000 units of electric and solar-powered automobiles in Kenyan market in the next 36 months.
The company also seeks to cascade the same in other countries they operate in such as Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Rwanda and DRC.
Due to its various innovations, the firm has been honored by various awards including the Key Industry Leadership Recognition Pogram dubbed ‘PacesettersAwards Kenya’ organized by Jubilant Stewards of Africa (JSA) which recently honored the firm for setting the pace in Electric and Solar automobiles.
Electric Vehicles are much cheaper to run based on fuel costs alone. When maintenance costs are factored in, going electric starts becoming a uniquely more attractive option.
This is because brake systems tend to last longer than on conventional vehicles, and electric vehicles (EVs) have fewer fluids to change and far fewer moving parts to maintain.
As the globe grapples with climate change, carbon emissions, low-level motorization and increased congestion, Kenya is set to shift the paradigm through electric vehicles.
The regional lessor VAELL has been in the forefront advocating for incentives to spur the uptake of EVs. Earlier the firm asked the Kenyan government to evaluate the incentives offered, to encourage the use of EVs in the reduction of pollution and to help combat climate change.
The Naivasha headquartered lessor suggested a 100% tax exemption for electric automobiles minimizing the price gap with conventional vehicles. These inducements apply to the local batteries and car assembly, importation and installation of EVs and their infrastructure.
With the adoption and production of electric vehicles (EVs) taking off globally due to improvements in technology and the declining cost of lithium-ion batteries, the African continent now has a better opportunity to unlock the full potential of electric mobility.
Kenya is well set to become the region’s hub for electric vehicle solutions and assembly, with major online cab hailing brands in the country gearing towards EVs.
Kenya’s position as a global leader in renewable energy, its wide technological adoption, and the government’s push for electric vehicles through friendly policies are a major boost for EV uptake and early adoption.
Over 70% of Kenya’s electricity comes from renewable energy today. This means in the global push to actualize electrified transit in the world, embracing electric vehicles early will be of greater impact for the country.
Vehicle and Equipment Leasing Limited (VAELL) is the market leader in asset leasing, maintenance and consulting in Eastern and Central Africa region. It has presence in the auto mobile, healthcare, mining, agricultural, telecommunication, construction, gas and oil sector.
It has managed to diversify and expand its portfolio by offering customized solutions to suit every client’s requirement and need. VAELL, the leading provider of integrated leasing services for a broad range of moveable assets and machinery across the region, has geographical coverage with fully-fledged subsidiaries in Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania and Zambia.
The leasing firm has a correspondent relationship with other leasing companies in South Africa and India. It facilitates clients with vehicles and machinery throughout the region from any one-country office across its network.
In 2014 VAELL won the award for the Best in Transport, in the Top 100 KPMG/Business Daily survey, and 2015 shot into Club 101 in the same survey. It has scooped 14 awards in the last 5 years. It was also named in 2018 by East African Business Council Tanzania as the best East African Company in The Service Sector. The lessor has also been named in the South Africa’s Titan Building Nation awards in the outstanding achievement category.
VAELL was recently hosted by Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) onto its premium incubation and acceleration program; Ibuka.
VAELL also owns Quipbank Trust Limited; an equipment sharing platform, TingA, East Africa’s largest tractor sharing platform and the recently launched IT’s Electric Limited, an electric vehicle sale and leasing platform http://www.vaell.com/ !
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