Bolt Food has officially announced its decision to close operations in South Africa on December 8, 2023, following its earlier exit from the Nigerian market on December 7, 2023.
This announcement follows after Bolt Food announced its imminent exit from Nigeria.
The journey began in April 2020 when Bolt Food launched in Cape Town, South Africa. By October 2021, it expanded to serving deliveries from approximately 300 restaurants in Johannesburg, after initially starting with 800 restaurants in Cape Town.
A key strategy for Bolt Food’s entry into the market during the pandemic was competitive pricing, charging a flat 15% entry-level commission fee compared to rivals Uber Eats and Mr. D Food, which charged up to 30% of restaurant partners’ commissions.
Despite its success in Kenya and Ghana, the reason for Bolt Food’s departure from South Africa remains unclear. The move comes amid a thriving South African online food delivery market, with an expected revenue of $2.10 billion in 2023, projected to grow at 10.84% annually from 2023 to 2027, reaching a market volume of $3.17 billion. The increasing popularity of online food delivery services is evident, with an estimated 22.2 million users in South Africa projected by 2027.