OX, the creators of the OX truck, partnered with Endava to produce a “market-creating innovation” focused on underserved developing transport markets. OX created an innovative ecosystem that will enable affordable, shared access to transport in the developing world and the OX truck is at the heart of it all. Endava’s partnership with OX progressed key elements of the ecosystem to ensure the inspiring vision was a tangible and credible plan before becoming a reality.
As the target end user of the OX ecosystem is currently a nonconsumer of motorised transport, this has not been the standard customer journey that most businesses undertake. Rwanda was selected as the test market to explore the customer journey because of its landlocked nature and the lack of a railway system, which has led to a high dependency on road transport. Even so, there are only two cars to every 100 people in Rwanda, and OX’s strategy is to offer transport and associated services at a price that creates a growing, self-reinforcing demand.
To achieve the required lower price, the physical operating costs of an OX truck are shared across multiple users by offering multiple desirable products through a single digital platform as a pay-as-you-go (PAYG) style service. The impact of affordable transport on the price of goods will be big, too. In Rwanda 40% of the cost of goods is attributed to transport – compared to a typical 6% in more developed transport markets.
In Africa, a mobile phone is more than just a landline alternative – it is a mobile bank account, a trading tool, and even proof of identity. In the test market, Rwanda, 8 in 10 people own a mobile phone. To take advantage of the widely available but varied use of mobiles, OX and Endava have devised a world-leading transport system app that is compatible with both 2G phones and smart phones meaning a customer will be able to request an OX service such as transport or distribution of goods to and from a location, much like using an app on a smart phone, but using a 2G feature phone.
In order to make the solution a reality, OX needed to refine their vision first. Together, we shaped the business strategy by creating a business model canvas to clearly set out the key parts of what OX wanted to achieve, while also assisting in the creation of a customer model and impact map. Endava also included workshops to analyse the OX truck driver’s role in the overall business model.
By honing the core mobility service, we created a customer journey that provided detailed steps a customer would take to use the OX solution and created a service blueprint that included the business processes, systems and assets required to deliver the mobility service.
When designing the technical approach, we explored how to engage with OX’s target customers and examined their general access to mobile phones, the Internet and different payment methods. We studied USSD, a technology used to engage with people in developing countries, reviewed mobile money schemes, investigated ways to define locations in imprecisely labelled rural areas, and researched digital mapping technologies, as not all are suitable for areas where many roads are unpaved and may not be driveable all year round.
Endava created a high-level platform architecture, describing the key components, and preparing OX for their next steps by creating a roadmap, starting with a pilot and growing incrementally to a country-wide service. Additionally, we provided technology estimates for each stage in the roadmap, showing what technology was needed, which parts would have to be custom developed, and how much it would cost.
Through this joint effort of in-depth research and planning to understand people’s real needs and their environment, OX determined that this user-centric technology strategy and operating model that we helped design would best serve their unique target market.
Sitting at the centre of this ecosystem is the OX truck – the world’s first flat-pack, all-terrain utility vehicle which has been specifically designed for the developing world by world-renowned automotive designer Professor Gordon Murray and his team. There are four prototypes of the truck today which have been tested in the UK, India and Spain and a customer evaluation fleet is scheduled to be built mid-2021.
The OX truck provides fit-for-purpose transport that has been designed for the unique combination of poor-quality dirt roads, the need for high carrying capacities, and the ability to manufacture locally. Comparing the OX to a typical second-hand pick-up that is commonly found on the roads in Rwanda, OX can take up to 50% more payload and three times the capacity.
The impact of the ecosystem starts with job creation and leads to providing access to transport, with which productivity is boosted having widespread impact that will drive further demand. The economic impact at a local and national level will be exponentially positive. The market will also be enabled to bypass many requirements for traditional infrastructure to be in place – something that has strained economic growth in many emerging markets.
The next steps in the journey for the OX are securing further partnerships to strengthen the ecosystem, in-market research starting October 2020, and a customer evaluation fleet build next year.
Ultimately, utilising existing technologies and combining them with an OX provides a different model entirely and could be a real gamechanger for millions of people!
If you would like to find out more, visit https://www.oxdelivers.com/
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