Baisikeli Ugunduzi: No Air, No Flats, No Problems

Baisikeli Ugunduzi's airless bicycle tubes put an end to flat tires for people who depend on bicycles in Sub-Saharan Africa.
20120923115443-6938747035_d9434fdd83_m
John Gershenson
Technology
Kitale
Kenya
4 Team Members

What if there was a product that eliminated flat tires in developing countries?

What if this product was affordable and increased incomes for those on the edge of extreme poverty by 25%?

What if this same product made it safer for women to travel on their own and allowed more children to attend school reliably? 

And what if YOU could support a cause that would impact millions of families whose income depends upon bicycles?

This product exists …. and you can change those lives NOW! 

Baisikeli Ugunduzi has a revolutionary product that eliminates the biggest problem with bicycles in the developing world - flat tires. The milele bicycle tube replaces the traditional pneumatic tube with a flexible tube that never needs air and never needs to be patched

Ben and John with the signature green milele tube sticking out of a tire
Ben and John with the signature green milele tube sticking out of a tire

The largest group of cyclists who will benefit from this new product are the 1 million African bicycle taxi drivers (boda boda, in Kenya). Boda boda earn about $2.50 per day. This leaves them struggling to feed their families and send their children to school. Heavy load haulers carry over 200kg for up to 100km each day and are at risk of being robbed should they have a flat tire. 

Because of the poor quality pneumatic tubes and poor road conditions, people earning a living on their bikes suffer two or more flat tires per day. Each flat costs boda boda 25 cents and an hour of lost work. 

A boda boda spends 25% of their income repairing flat tires! 

A boda boda with a flat tire
A boda boda with a flat tire

What is the milele tube?  
The milele tube is a flexible, solid, foam tube. It's compatible with all boda boda, heavy load, and commuter bicycles. The milele tube installs inside the normal tire and is reused when the tire is worn and replaced. The milele tube will last five years! At a price of $10, The tube pays for itself ten times over in the first year and up to 50 times in its life. 

Who is Baisikeli Ugunduzi?
We are a company of engineers, returned peace corps volunteers, bikers, designers, and entrepreneurs. Baisikeli Ugunduzi produces high quality bicycle components with those who depend on their bicycles to earn a living in Sub-Saharan Africa. We work with Kenyan riders, mechanics, and bicycle taxi unions on a daily basis to design, produce, and distribute innovative, professional quality bicycle components.

We are not an NGO, we are a social business. We are a for-profit business driven by social impact rather than profit. 
Baisikeli Ugunduzi’s social business model focuses on increasing the value of working bicycles, decreasing the costs of bicycle ownership, and improving the profitability of those depending on bicycles. We are a business that manufactures in Kenya and will distribute products directly to rural areas, where most bicycles are used.

For boda boda drivers and mechanics, our company fills a huge void. Customers are extremely frustrated with poor quality, Asian-made products that are not designed for the rough life-cycle and pot hole ridden terrain of working bicycles in Africa. 

How did we get our data and why should you believe us?
Baisikeli Ugunduzi has spent nearly two years developing the milele tube by co-designing with boda boda and extensive product testing in Kenya. They have tested and we have listened, building trust and love for the Baisikeli Ugunduzi brand. The milele tube is as much designed by boda boda as it is by us. Over half of the Baisikeli Ugunduzi team now lives in Kitale, Kenya and is working with boda boda daily. The milele tubes are already in use here! We have a local distribution agreement and manufacturing operations are set to launch. 

A boda boda carrying heavy loads
A boda boda carrying heavy loads

Where does your donation go? 
Every dollar donated will go towards manufacturing milele tubes and getting them on Kenyan bicycles. We can afford to manufacture the first several thousand tubes, but this hardly satisfies the need here in Kitale, let alone the rest of Western Kenya. Not a cent of your donation will go towards salaries, overhead, or anything else! With $40,000 we will be able to manufacture nearly 8,000 milele tubes. However, if we do not reach at least $40,000 we will be left with only the few thousand tubes we can now afford to produce, leaving thousands of customers waiting for a solution to flat tires. 

If we don't reach $40,000 within 40 days we don't get a penny. 

If we raise $40,000, we will: 

  • supply thousands of customers and bicycle shops in Kenya with the milele tubes! 
  • improve the livelihoods of over 8,000 boda boda in Kitale 
  • eliminate most bicycle flats in Kitale
  • increase boda boda's incomes by 25%

Each donation will make a world of a difference for people who depend on their bicycles to earn a living.

EVERY $1000 DONATED IS 250 MORE TUBES WE CAN BRING TO PEOPLE WHO DEPEND ON BICYCLES.

We have put together a wide range of locally made rewards to thank you for your support.

So come, join Baisikeli Ugunduzi and help us eliminate flat tires! 

Your reward - Baisikeli Ugunduzi jewelry
Your reward - Baisikeli Ugunduzi jewelry
 
Your reward - a sample of boda boda photography
Your reward - a sample of boda boda photography

For more information, please contact us: 
E john@baisikeliugunduzi.com / ben@baisikeliugunduzi.com 
W www.baisikeliugunduzi.com 
FB www.facebook.com/BaisikeliUgunduzi

The Baisikeli Ugunduzi team (Kabole, Ben, Joseph, Susan, and John) in front of New Generation Cycle Mart, the first to carry our tubes.  Jackie and Owen are busy taking photos.
The Baisikeli Ugunduzi team (Kabole, Ben, Joseph, Susan, and John) in front of New Generation Cycle Mart, the first to carry our tubes. Jackie and Owen are busy taking photos.
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$7,960USD
raised by 81 people in 1 month
20% funded
0 time left
$40,000 USD goal
Fixed Funding This campaign did not meet its $40,000USD funding goal by the deadline.
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Select a Perk
  • $10USD
    SEND A BODA BODA A MESSAGE!

    Put your own message to a boda boda on one milele tube. We will email you a photo and post them on our website.

    5 claimed

    Estimated delivery: December 2012
  • $30USD
    HANDCRAFTED MILELE JEWELRY!

    Show your support with beautiful earrings or a necklace handmade using one of our milele tubes and hand painted by Damascus, a Kitale artisan. If you donate $50, we will send both the earrings and the necklace. Expect some Baisikeli Ugunduzi stickers in the package.

    19 claimed

    Estimated delivery: November 2012
  • $40USD
    A BAISIKELI UGUNDUZI HAT!

    Baisikeli Ugunduzi hats have made it to the list of perks. Wear your support with this adjustable green trucker hat sporting a BU patch. Also expect a few stickers in the package.

    5 claimed

    Estimated delivery: December 2012
  • $70USD
    A MINIATURE BODA BODA!

    Julius at Heshima Craft in Kisumu, Kenya will handcraft a miniature Baisikeli Ugunduzi boda boda bicycle out of upcycled Kenyan metals and wires. Great to display on a desk or mantle. Expect some Baisikeli Ugunduzi stickers in the package.

    14 claimed

    Estimated delivery: November 2012
  • $150USD
    TUBES FOR PEOPLE IN NEED!

    We will make a pair of tubes especially for a boda boda, school child, or Kenyan aid worker as you decide. The message is on us. You will receive a thank you message from the recipient if you choose along with some Baisikeli Ugunduzi stickers.

    10 claimed

    Estimated delivery: December 2012
  • $250USD
    BODA BODA PHOTOGRAPHY!

    How about a boda boda print to display on your wall? You will choose from a few taken by the BU team in Kitale. It will have a small Baisikeli Ugunduzi logo. Expect some Baisikeli Ugunduzi stickers in the package.

    7 claimed

    Estimated delivery: November 2012
  • $450USD
    MILELE TUBES: BUY 1, GIVE 1

    Your very own milele tubes and one set for a boda boda. We will ship you a pair direct from Kenya to work with any 1.5" tire (tell us your wheel size). Better yet, you will also donate one pair (the message is on us) and receive a thank you note back if you would like. How fun will it be to ride over nails and never get a flat? Tubes will ship with specially designed Baisikeli Ugunduzi valve hole covers and stickers for your bike. Expect some Baisikeli Ugunduzi jewelry in the package.

    0 claimed

    Estimated delivery: December 2012
  • $1,000USD
    MAKE IT A DOZEN!

    That is a pair of tubes sent to you and 10 tubes donated. Everything is just like above. If you don't need tubes yourself, you can choose to donate all 12. Expect some Baisikeli Ugunduzi jewelry and stickers in the package.

    1 claimed

    Estimated delivery: December 2012
  • $1,500USD
    VOLUNTEER WITH US!

    Be a part of the Baisikeli Ugunduzi team for a week. Work in Kitale, meet local boda boda and ride a boda boda bike, and have a traditional meal at a boda boda's house. You might build tubes, teach women to ride, fix bikes, or volunteer with boda boda. Work as hard as you want. Stay at a local resort until you head back or leave us to travel. Includes your own milele tubes and some surprises. Come after December 2012. If there will be more than one person, we can set a discounted rate for them.

    0 claimed

    Estimated delivery: December 2012
  • $4,000USD
    A BODA BODA BICYCLE!

    We will have a brand new boda boda bicycle completely outfitted for you. It will have a passenger seat all set for carrying people or loads and, best of all, it will be hand painted by a Kitale artist. We will package and ship this bicycle to you. This is your chance to be the only one to own the most iconic piece of transportation in Africa.

    0 claimed

    Estimated delivery: December 2012
  • $10,000USD
    VOLUNTEER / SAFARI WITH US!

    You will come to Kenya for two weeks and spend one week volunteering with us as above and we will add in a customized safari with TemboKanga Tours. Bruce will show you the best of Kenya by foot, bike, or safari van. You will have nice accommodations throughout your stay and take home a set of milele tubes, plus most of the other rewards. Price is per person and is available any time after December 2012. If there will be more than one person, let us know as we can set a discounted rate for them.

    0 claimed

    Estimated delivery: December 2012
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