Movements | March 12th, 2019

Bird Platform, Ofo and Didi challenges, Uber at SFO, and more!

Issue #38 — Brought to you by Michal Naka and Adam FeldmanJoin thousands of others who receive this weekly analysis and curation of emerging mobility news in their inbox every week  — subscribe now.


Bird launched its ‘Platform’ in Auckland, New Zealand with Wave Scooters as the first operator. Since the original announcement last fall, the Bird Platform offering has evolved in two significant ways: 1) Removed access to Bird’s network of chargers and mechanics. 2) Operators now get exclusive rights to each market. | NZ Herald

Uber is looking to add cameras to its scooters and bikes for safety, deterrent to vandalism, and for greater accuracy while tracking down vehicles. | Stuff

Korean messaging app Kakao, launched an eBike sharing service. “The e-bike campaign arrives after Kakao’s latest attempts to venture into the carpooling service were thwarted due to fierce backlash from the taxi community.” Pulse

Scooter operator Beam is running a pilot with food delivery company Food Panda to give couriers access to micromobility options. | Beam

Lyft lays off 50 employees as it reorganizes its scooter and bike divison. | The Information

Throwback: Scooters invade downtown Atlanta in 1916. (Thanks Spencer from The Prepared!) | AJC

Lego Bikeshare. | Lego

Bird and Lime are taking very different approaches to growth. | The Information


Chinese mobility companies faced a rough ride throughout 2018, from Ofo’s cash problems to Didi’s challenges with assault and regulatory issues. Maybe there’re a few lessons Western firms can learn? | TechNode

Mobike continues to cut back international markets. | Techcrunch


How Via benefits from new regulations that hurt Uber and Lyft. | Crains

Taxify rebrands as ‘Bolt’ as it aims to be a multimodal transportation platform for Europe. | Techcrunch

As ridehailing proliferates at airports around the world, the pickup experience is rapidly deteriorating. Uber is trying to combat that with a new pilot at SFO where riders can get picked up in a nearby parking garage and save $3 dollars. Can’t wait to see this on city streets, too! | Uber

What happens if regulators require Uber and Lyft to hire their drivers? “One person who has been briefed on such calculations at Uber said that company has projected it could be profitable if they’re forced to hire drivers as employees but revenue could contract or slow dramatically as part-time drivers drop off.” | The Information

A look into Grab’s new feature to redistribute demand to ‘non-peak’ periods. | Tech In Asia

Fundraising & Deals

Grab raised an additional $1.5 billion from SoftBank, taking their Series H round to $4.5 billion. The ridehaling firm has raised nearly $9 billion since 2012. | VentureBeat

Hammerhead raised a $4.2 million seed round to build an OS for bikes. | Techcrunch

Hyundai looks to invest up to $300 million into India’s Ola cab. | Economic Times

FlixBus, a European bus operations platform, is buying Eurolines, a long-distance bus service, from TransDev. | TechCrunch

Cities & Policy

A disability rights group sued San Diego over scooters being ridden and parked on the sidewalk, claiming the new vehicles cause discrimination against people with disabilities. In response, Lime says its “convening an industry-wide education and safety summit on micromobility.” The summit will include disability rights leaders and will focus on “making sure that these micromobility models thrive in a very safe environment.”| NPR

The UK releases a national Future of Mobility report. | Gov.UK

Closing central Madrid to cars results in a 9.5% increase in retail spending | Forbes

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