Moovr : an Uber for cows

Written by Olivia Spaethe

Tell us a few words about the founders and how the idea came

Moovr was founded by a group of 5 students on March 2016, after winning the second place for best runner-up and best presentation at King’s college Social Entrepreneurship workshop, competing with eight other runners-up. 

The Moovr team is consisted of five King’s Alumni students with master degrees in Emerging Economies and International Development. The team has experiences in Development, Economics, Business, Local Markets and Project Management in Africa, Syria, UK, Australia and EU.

The identified problem is that up to 3 million pastoralist and nomadic livestock farmers in Kenya must currently pay exorbitant transport prices or walk up to a week along dangerous roads to take their livestock to a market.

We believe that providing a mobile platform to both farmers and drivers will allow them to better coordinate and organise a more efficient trip to the market. This is how we came up with Moovr : connecting truckers with farmers directly through an easy-to-use mobile application that will collect information about the truckers that are passing through a given area and pass information along to farmers, who will be able to use SMS or a smartphone app to select the trucker based on price, route, and time and place of pickup.

Your products and services 

 SMS-based system as the majority of our customers lack access to a smartphone. In our initial pilot market of Kenya, mobile penetration is particularly high (88% in 2015), with SMS platforms being most widespread. Farmers SMS their needs to us and we collate this information to match farmers with local drivers and quote a price. Similarly to Uber, our platform is cashless, with farmers paying drivers through a connected mobile money provider such as M-Pesa which is widely used throughout Kenya.
By collating and disseminating information on the farmers in the region seeking transport and the drivers who can offer it, Moovr is able to reduce transport costs and organise more efficient transport linkages in remote agricultural markets. This pushes down costs and supports increased incomes for both farmers and drivers as well as Moovr’s financial sustainability. 

Your success factors 

We won a Allesch-Taylor Scholarship in December 2016 to finance part of the trip to Kenya to undertake field research. Also on November 8th, 2016 Moovr was mentioned as a success story in the European Business School in Paris during an event at Mhd Yunus Social centre. The event was hosting about 120 people from all around the world, and one of the received testimonies was by professor Stephen Bach who cited Moovr as an example of how smart and motivated students can use social Entrepreneurship programs and education to produce fantastic outcomes. Moovr has been mentioned a success story in many events in the international development and social entrepreneurship community at King’s College and in London.

At this stage, Moovr is building its way toward developing a prototype to be tested in Kenya in order to start the official launching of the service. The team has a clear vision for the business and conducted extensive research for the past months about the market in Kenya and how to customize Moovr as a solution to fit its unique needs. Moreover, Moovr team focused from the beginning on building a wide network with expertise around the world and especially in Africa and Kenya in the areas of farm related technologies and social entrepreneurship. We are in contact with experts in tech for development, mobile money providers like Vodafone and Safaricom to create the Moovr platform. Additionally, we are speaking to people with experience in livestock and transportation in Kenya and potential investors both in London and Kenya to ensure that we best understand the challenges we face and the market in which we wish to operate.

Your factors differentiating and disruptive compared to the existing 

Moovr’s innovation is in the adaptation of a new high-tech solution for an old, low-tech problem and in applying an SMS sharing economy model to rural agricultural transportation in developing countries.

Your business model

 We will connect farmers with drivers who will determine the transaction cost between them. Moovr will then take a portion of the fee paid by farmers to their transport providers. This fee will be determined as a fixed percentage of the transaction, with a minimum per transaction price to ensure our financial sustainability. We will also generate additional revenue through using our platform to advertise to our user base, comprising farmers and drivers. Our service would also generate significant information databases, which may present future possibilities for further revenue generation.

A few words about your competitors

 We have not identified any competitors

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About the author

Olivia Spaethe


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