Kibo Africa. a motorbike manufacturing firm has unveiled its newest office in Nakuru county as is seeks to expand outside Nairobi. The move is set to increase competition with Chinese made motorbikes. “We want to offer a platform for kibo to share innovation and build the spirit of entrepreneurship in the region with our brand motorcycle Kibo K150,” said Mr Huib Van de Grijspaarade, the company’s chief executive officer in charge of the Africa region.
He highlighted the company’s plans to provide quality and reliable motorcycles for the Kenyan market and in the region. The executive said the regional market was still infant as demand for motorcycles was set to rise from Sh 400 billion to Sh 900 billion by 2022.
The Kibo K150 was designed last year to suit the African terrain. The design process included several trips to Kenya over a two year period. According to the company, the K150 aims to be a “hybrid” between a street and off-road motorbike. Design features include large wheels with tyres suited to both types of terrain, a suspension system that allows riders to carry heavy cargo, and a high space between the ground and the bike.
Plans are that the bike will initially be used in Kenya, with plans to roll it out to other African countries such as Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania, Ethiopia and South Africa. Kibo will also provide safety training and equipment such as helmets and gloves.
Additionally, Kibo is being positioned in marketing as a “social mobility” brand, which is a play on the social impact it intends to make, its place as a transportation brand and also the fact that it will be “almost entirely advertised through digital platforms”.
Marketing will include short films of customers riding while being filmed via on-bike cameras and drones, growing a community for the brand through platforms such as Facebook, and taking part in entrepreneurial speaking events alongside other start-ups.