Uganda's boda-hailing startup, SafeBoda, looks to be setting up an office in Barcelona, Spain, with its recent job adverts. The company currently has 8 job positions open for applications and marked 'new' on Landing.jobs.
The job positions range from intermediate to senior level with salaries ranging from €35,000 to €65,000 as well as compensation like employee stock options.
The job adverts are; Fullstack Engineer, Back-end Engineer, Senior Software Engineer (Android), Backend-Engineer (Elixir), Senior Software Engineer (Android), Software Engineer (Android), Senior Back-end Engineer, DevOps Engineer, Software Engineer (iOS) and Senior Software Engineer (iOS).
Yet, it seems that these will have to travel to East Africa. As one of the 'perks' points out an "opportunity to travel to East Africa and interact with the product and our multi-cultural team."
This move is perhaps as a result of the current scaling the company is pursuing which might need them to hire a more sophisticated team of engineers to handle the level of scale they want.
In the past few months, the company has had issues with its application where it was hard for one to hail a boda and had to continue requesting many times or wait for a couple of minutes. Though this seems to be getting under control lately.
This is not the first time SafeBoda is seeking external help to enable them to cope with the growing demand for their product.
Towards the end of 2016, SafeBoda hired Jonathan Block, an ex-Lyft engineer to help them work on their new app at that time. Jonathan, in his Medium blog, wrote that his mission was to "serve as interim CTO for 1 month".
He was thus required to "provide leadership to a small ride share engineering team, paving the way for future success."
This move won't make SafeBoda the first startup operating in Africa to have a distributed team across another continent. Jumia Group's technical team is spread across Europe and the Middle East - Dubai to be specific.
Fenix International also has a team spread across the US, Europe as well as Asia. While Flutterwave, Tala, Branch and a couple of others all have offices in the USA.
SafeBoda co-founder and co-CEO, Alastair Sussock got in touch with us and clarified on the issue. He said that the move is to prepare the company to handle the level of scale they are onto.
"Our goal is to scale the SafeBoda platform and provide more services to drivers and passengers in Kampala and across East Africa so we need to grow our technology stack fast," Alastair wrote.
Though, he maintained that "the majority of our tech will be in Kampala and we are hiring aggressively to find the best talent in the East Africa region."
"We are also experimenting by trying to hire in another location and manage it from afar."
On why they chose Barcelona, Alastair pointed out the fast-rising status of the city. "We decided on trying Barcelona as it’s becoming a strong European tech hub," he said. Adding that the time zone is also close to that of East Africa.