Why Lime can survive one lockdown
Plus, Ola funds world’s largest e-moped factory, UK scooter sales skyrocket, and a wearable airbag startup nabs $12M.
Hello and welcome to the Micromobility Newsletter, a weekly missive about mobility, mostly urban mobility that is enabled by small vehicles. The reason you’re reading this email is that you signed up on our website or came to one of our webinars or events.
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Amazing things happen when we share. Joyride Alliance is a new micromobility industry collective that gives all operators access to group buying opportunities and world-class insurance policies that couldn’t be realized on their own. And since there’s strength in numbers, non-Joyride customers can easily enjoy the same benefits, which include a free yearly subscription to Micromobility Industries' Triple M webinars. Click here to join the movement today.
The Micromobility 500
The latest version of the Micromobility Landscape is here, featuring 500 of the most globally significant companies working in the space of moving people using technologies and vehicles lighter in weight than the automobile. Although consolidation has been the watchword of 2020, the industry continues to grow at a remarkable pace—350% year-over-year. Learn more here.
Heads up: If you want to discover more potential partners and clients, check out our first-ever all-digital event, Micromobility World (Jan 27-29), which will call together 2500+ investors, policymakers, journalists, and entrepreneurs for three days of insightful programming devoted to the future of urban mobility.
There are a limited number of free tickets left, so sign up before prices go up.
What you need to know this week
Electric scooter sales have tripled this year in the UK, according to the country’s largest retailer. Maybe that’s because a recent study found that 52% of Britons would commute using a scooter.
Ola will spend $327M to build the world’s largest electric moped factory in South India. The Softbank-backed Indian ride-hailing firm says the factory will have an initial capacity to produce two million vehicles a year.
New data confirms shared micromobility is experiencing a slow recovery in the United States, with bookings down 53% year-over-year. This may not bother the country’s largest scooter startup, though. According to Lime CEO Wayne Ting, two-thirds of the company’s business is generated internationally. It would be interesting to see how those numbers compare for Lime’s rival Bird, which operates in about a third as many international cities.
It’s been a record year for New York and London’s public bike-sharing systems.
According to the Chinese Bicycle Associations, from January to September, the number of bicycles produced in China was 32.202M units, an increase of 14.2% year-on-year; electric bike production grew to 22.853M units, an increase of 30.3%.
Southeast Asian micromobility operator Beam claims it was EBITA positive in Q3.
White-label fleet platform Ridecell has raised $45M in a Series C round led by Fort Ross Ventures
There were about 4.3M electric rickshaw batteries sold in India in 2019. More than 90% of them were lead acid.
… meanwhile, Uber just launched the first electric rickshaws on its platform in India.
Voi is committing $3M to improve safety, parking, and sustainability through its new City Innovation Fund. Its first investments will be Oonee, MaasLab at University College London, and Nortical.
Year-to-date through October, US bicycle imports were up 19%.
The South Korean government has approved electric scooters and all other LEVs under 67 lbs in bike lanes. Previously scooter were required to ride with traffic.
Dott’s new dockless ebike service will launch first in London and Paris in March 2021.
The bike boom has arrived in Manilla.
Through a new partnership, Bolt users who park their scooters at BP gas stations in Poland can earn rewards like free coffee and discounted rides.
Manufacturers have high-margin ebikes to thank for their record fiscal year. Despite outselling ebikes by 250%, pedal-powered bikes only created marginally more revenue for Czech manufacturer BFI in 2020.
The Rideshare Guy’s Harry Campbell unboxes and reviews the Bird Air scooter.
A new study implicitly endorses the idea that large micromobility deployments are more likely to succeed than small fleets. “When prospective users can observe others using the system, their perceptions of risk decrease, which increases the likelihood they [too] will adopt public bicycles.” (h/t David Zipper)
Remembering the Vespa 150 TAP, the bazooka-equipped moped that French paratroopers actually used in combat in the 1950s.
French wearable airbag startup In&motion has raised $12 million in a funding round led by Upfront Ventures.
Automotive supplier Valeo will begin manufacturing ebike motors.
Helsinki approved a plan to increase cycling’s mode share to 20% by 2035.
… and Montreal’s new climate plan calls for banning non-electric cars in the downtown area, removing parking near transit stations, and providing municipal funding to businesses that make deliveries using bikes.
Here are some useful tips and tricks for ebiking in the winter.
For the 100th episode of the podcast, Horace Dediu and Oliver Bruce reflect on what they got wrong and what they got right in the last two years. They also lay down some theories about where we’re the micromobility movement will be when episode 200 comes out.
Oliver’s bet: “It will be default that if you are making urban infrastructure you will of course make space for micromobility.”
Horace’s bet: “Yes we’ll have ‘achieved boredom;’” also tech giants like Amazon, Google, and Apple will be launching micromobility plays.
Jobs to be done
Welcome to our jobs board, where every week we post open positions in hopes of connecting our readers with professional opportunities in the burgeoning world of new mobility. Find out who’s hiring below and sign up for the newsletter to view fresh listings every week.
Hit reply if you have a job you’d like to list in the newsletter.
Product Design Engineer at Dance (Berlin)
AI/ML Engineer at Luna (Dublin)
France General Manager at Felyx (Paris)
Marketing Manager at Zoomo (San Francisco)
VP of Product at Wunder Mobility (Hamburg)
Customer Success Specialist at Electric Feel (Europe remote)
Marketing Manager at Shift Transit (North America remote)
Electronics Engineering Project Manager at Cowboy (Brussels)
Big Data Developer at Wind (Barcelona)
Senior INS / GNSS Algorithms Engineer at Navmatic (San Jose or remote)
Mobility Fullstack Engineer at Trov (North America, remote)
Senior Product Manager at Ubiq (Vienna)