Kenya: Taxi-hailing firm Little to construct multi-million commercial office in Nairobi

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  • Technology company Little has announced plans to construct a commercial office building in Lavington, Nairobi, using commercial mortgage loans
  • The cost of the construction is estimated to come in between KSh 597.9 million and KSh 717.4 million, and will begin in 2023 on an undisclosed size of land in Lavington
  • Little began its operations in 2016 as a taxi-hailing service provider and is currently based in Craft Silicon Campus building in Westlands, along with its parent company, Craft Silicon Limited

Kenyan-based technology company Little has announced plans to construct a commercial office building in Lavington, Nairobi, using commercial mortgage loans.

According to Cytonn Investments, the construction cost would be estimated to come in between KSh 597.9 million and KSh 717.4 million and will begin in 2023 on an undisclosed size of land that the company owns along Kabasarian Avenue.

Little began its operations in 2016 as a taxi-hailing service provider and is currently based in Craft Silicon Campus building in Westlands, along with its parent company, Craft Silicon Limited.

However, Little is seeking to establish its own identity through the upcoming development that will also accommodate its increasing operations that have caused more expansion, besides minimising congestion at its current location.

Besides taxi-hailing services it began with, Little App currently runs other operations such as food deliveries, entertainment services, and health care services.

The commercial office sector continues to show signs of recovery, as evidenced by the various expansion activities witnessed in the sector.

Going forward, the investment firm said it expects the move to continue driving the performance of the sector by providing more affordable commercial space for expanding businesses.

Taxi hailing app on display. Photo: Unsplash.

“However, we note that office spaces continue to exceed demand with a current oversupply of 6.7 million SQFT. We expect the trend to shape the sector as more firms continue to adopt remote working strategies. This will see the occupancy levels decline and consequently see a decline in the rental yields as property owners lower their rents to attract tenants,” Cytonn said.

Bolt opens Africa head office in Nairobi 

In a related story, Bolt recently opened its Africa Head Office in Nairobi, Kenya, months after receiving funding amounting to US$716 million for expansion.

In July 2022, Bolt said the new location would assist them in leveraging Nairobi’s strategic position to serve as a regional hub for its operations in Africa.

The on-demand mobility platform opened the office in Riverside Drive, Nairobi. The office will act as the regional nerve centre of the company, whose operations in Africa cuts through seven countries.

Apart from Kenya, Bolt also has a presence in Uganda, Tanzania, Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, and Tunisia.

The mobility company said the move forms part of its continued growth and investment strategy in the region as it seeks to deepen its presence in Africa in a unified approach.

It will also provide an opportunity for Bolt to make its operations more integrated and cohesive across the region.

Commenting on the office’s opening, Bolt Regional Director and Interim VP for Rides, Paddy Partridge, noted that the investment is significant in strengthening their presence in Africa as a region considering the country’s strategic location and infrastructural infrastructure advancement.

“This investment is strategic for us, as it will enable us to run and coordinate operations seamlessly across Africa in an integrated manner.”

The director added that the office would provide the company access to the great COMESA regional markets they are keen on expanding to.

“Kenya’s strategic location in the region and the infrastructure have enabled us to grow tremendously in the East African market. We believe we can leverage this to achieve more across the entire continent still.”

The office will host the company’s top-brass leadership overseeing operations in Africa, including the Regional Director and Interim VP for Rides, the Regional Manager for Ride-hailing, East Africa, the Regional Marketing Manager, Africa, the Senior Head of Public Policy and Legal Director for Africa.

However, the company will still maintain its local offices in each of these markets to seamlessly coordinate its operations more personally.

Bolt raises US$716 million to speed up expansion plans

Wanjiku Njuguna is a Kenyan-based business reporter with experience of more than eight years.

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