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The Small Vehicle Delivery Driver Market: Fast, fickle and full of potential for employment




Primary data collected through stakeholder interviews, academic and industry reports, National Traffic Information System (eNatis) data, Trade data, pilot survey of delivery drivers, information shared by delivery drivers on online platforms

Desktop research, stakeholder interviews


South Africa has experienced rapid growth in the demand for motorbike delivery drivers in recent years due to several factors. These include the growth of e-commerce, the demand for takeaway food delivery, and the emergence of on-demand grocery delivery services, all of which were boosted by Covid-19 imposed lockdowns. However, the pipeline of licensed motorcycle drivers appears significantly constrained. Employers and recruiters struggle to meet demand, and a clear opportunity to pathway for young unemployed South Africans into the sector appears to be blocked.


The research aimed to better understand the demand opportunity within the small vehicle delivery driver sector (with a particular emphasis on motorcycles), but also attempted to better appreciate the reasons behind the constrained supply. This project began to identify levers for change that could influence the dynamics of talent into the industry, and ultimately unlock an opportunity to get more young South Africans employed in this sector. The research findings were informed by a combination of desktop research of publicly available information on the sector, stakeholder interviews, insights gathered from driver social media groups and pages, as well as discussions and interviews with delivery drivers.

Project resources

No publicly available outputs