First electric scooter-sharing service comes to Egypt: Soft launch of SLYD in Cairo

To help tackle the air pollution in Egypt, Slyd is introducing an environmentally-cautious solution targeted at helping people commute the last-mile through their application. The last mile is considered the distance between your transportation vehicle stop and your desired destination. This phenomenon gave birth to Slyd. Co-founder Alaa Shalabi shares how the idea came to life. According to Shalabi, this causes major inconvenience for riders who are unable to find means of commuting to or from their desired destination. While the scooters are often a vehicle that people use for fun rather than a mode of transport, countries in Europe and Asia have popularized the vehicle for commuting purposes. To learn more how these countries were able to achieve this, Shalabi visited Singapore and China where scooters are ubiquitous transportation vehicles.

Currently, Slyd is operating in Cairo. The service is available in the American University in Cairo (AUC), where its catered for those who park and need to walk 10 to 15 minute to reach the gate. However, it will soon be available in Greater Cairo.

The application gives the user access to find, unlock and ride a scooter. The scooters are parked in designated stations where the user is expected route him or herself to the pick up spot. Each scooter has a QR Code that must be scan to unlock the vehicle. Once the code is scanned, the trip starts. The user must then return the scooter at the station that is closest to their destination. The mobile app also supports payments, so the experience is fully automated. ntroducing this new concept to the market came with several challenges. “The fundamental challenge we are facing is finding an ecosystem that will allow us to operate and localize the manufacturing for different vehicles including the electric scooters,” Shalabi highlights, “Pre-curing vehicles is often done internationally and in Egypt we do not have manufacturing experience as opposed to other countries who have far more experience in this.”

Soon, the scooters will also be equipped with an anti-theft system to ensure that the scooters are collected and dropped off at the right places and avoid losing vehicles. Slyd will also introduce a sophisticated payment system from cash to credit. Credit card penetration is very low in the country and this business is predominantly based on credit card payment, thus having a very seamless cash payment experience through toping up a wallet or paying at a point of payment system vender in necessary.