Citymapper and its Founder – Azmat Yusuf

Credit Citymapper

Citymapper is a very useful urban transit app that was started originally as a guide for Londoners. Opened by Azmat Yusuf in 2011, the young Muslim founder never knew that the app would turn out to be successful as it is now.

Azmat Yusuf
Linkedin/ Azmat Yusuf

Azmat Yusuf attended the University of Pennsylvania and graduated with a degree in both Electrical Engineering and Economics. In 2009, the young innovative Muslim received his MBA from INSEAD. After his graduation, Yusuf worked at Google and later in the venture capital. He then moved to work in the equities fields for international banks before finding the Citymapper Limited.

Azmat Yusuf, a young innovative Muslim realized that both the residents and visitors of London were experiencing problems in navigating the city’s bus network. He then decided to develop an app that would help every Londoner to be able to navigate the City’s bus network easily, and in that way, Citymapper was born.

When the Citymapper was created in 2011, the app proved to be more effective than Yusuf though it would be. For this reason, he saw the need to run away with it. He then decided to launch it in other cities, which he has been doing since 2011. Toda, Citymapper covers very many global, big cities including Moscow, Washington, D.C, New York and so on.

Citymapper’s algorithm has the ability to pull in huge amounts of data to present users of a particular city with a range of transport options, which often include metro, bus, train, and Uber among many others.  The user can see the results through a glossy looking green app, which not only displays available options, but also presents them with detailed information such as journey distances, times and prices.

Londoners and other city dwellers have embraced the Citymapper for many reasons. First, it’s very simple to use and you don’t need to go through any complicated steps to get the information you are looking for. For instance, the app shows you the distance and the time you would take from one location to the other. Secondly, Londoners and other city dwellers can’t resist Citymapper because of its comedy value. For instance, the app shows you the number of doughnuts you would burn off if you opt to walk instead of taking the bus or train.

Azmat Yusuf, a Pakistani-born who is a former Google employee began the Citymapper as an app for Londoners only. After realizing that there was a need for the same services in other global cities, he decided to raise money to expand it so that it could be of helpful to other urban dwellers as well. From London, Yusuf took the app to cover NYC, and Paris.

Today, the app has expanded to cover more than 30 cities, and still, Azmat Yusuf has no plans of stopping any time soon. According to the Medium Post, the founder and other partners say that Citymapper is no longer just about London, NYC and Paris, and neither is it just about the 30 cities it has covered now. The company plans to move to the massive emerging market cities including the ones with sparse data and limited infrastructure.