Two years back, investors were pouring in money into China’s dockless bike-sharing start-ups. Now that craze has busted with derelict bikes littering the streets of cities.
A new race has started for two-wheelers with motors. One of the main players is a survivor from the bike-sharing craze. Blessed with funding from the world’s most valuable fintech Company, Ant Financial through its series D to F funding rounds. Hellobike is known to offer to its 230 million registered users a range of mobility services. This includes shared e-bikes and rented electric scooters.
Hellobike was first launched in 2016 by developing shared bikes in small towns and cities where Mobike and Ofo were not present. This helped hellobike to largely avoid the cash splurging competition against the two big companies.
Ofo is now facing major financial troubles as it struggles to repay user deposits. Its archrival Mobike has slowed down expansion since it was sold to Hong-Kong listed local services giant Meituan. On the other hand, Hellobike which boasts about its operation efficiency has begun electric push.
Hellobike’s Chief financial officer Fischer Chen recently informed TechCrunch at the Rise conference in Hong Kong:
“When the two major powers were at war, neither of them went after electric bikes. They were fighting over bicycles.” He referred to the feud between Ofo and Mobike. He also added “As such, there was no price war for e-bikes from the outset. The competition is rational.”
Electric two-wheeled vehicles are in high demand in the country. Based on the data collected by Hellobike, around 300 million rides are completed on analog bikes every day in China. Many don’t realize that pedal assists electric bikes and pedal-free scooters together more than double that number, generating 700 million rides every day.
There are benefits of renting a bicycle than buying an electric bike in China. This is mainly because users don’t have to worry about their assets getting stolen. Not just that but is specific to electric vehicles, finding a safe and convenient charging spot can be really difficult in China.