Hong Kong’s homegrown bike sharing operator launches in Paris and plans rapid expansion across Europe
[9 October 2017, Hong Kong] Gobee.bike, Hong Kong’s first and fastest growing dockless bike-sharing platform today announced its first expansion overseas in Paris, France. After a successful start in Hong Kong and soft launch in Lille, France, the GPS-enabled, self-locking green bikes will become an eco-friendly and alternative transport solution in Europe. Unlike traditional bike-sharing platforms, Gobee.bike’s technology requires no fixed racks and allows bikes to be parked anywhere legal and responsible.
Following the company’s US$9 million Series A funding round in August, just months after the company’s inaugural launch in April 2017, Gobee.bike’s debut in France continues the company’s rapid growth trajectory. The launch marks an important milestone for stationless bike-sharing in Europe as France is renowned for being the European capital of bike-sharing, boasting the largest network of docked bikes.
“We are thrilled to launch in Paris, my hometown and the birthplace of one of the world’s best known docked bike-sharing systems,” said Raphael Cohen, Co-founder and CEO of Gobee.bike. “The response to our bikes’ soft launch in Lille, four days prior, was overwhelmingly positive and reassures us of the reception we expect from the rest of France and wider Europe. Special thanks must go to our European team who has paved the way by leading industry discussions and working closely with local municipalities every step of the way.”
Gobee.bike will scale up its European operations from its European headquarters in Paris over the next several months with the goal of deploying a large fleet of its bikes across several cities in a manner that is harmonious with local municipalities and the existing transport ecosystem. To lead and assist the rapid expansion, the company has assembled a diverse, all-star European team with a blend of expertise from investment banking, ex-Rocket Internet ventures, and other fast-growing startups.
“Europe is a market of many dimensions as each European city presents its own problems when it comes to transport and consumer concerns,” said Malone Gampel, Vice President of Gobee.bike, Europe. “We will be hiring locally to ensure that we can best understand and address the individual nuances and consumer preferences for each specific market. The goal is to introduce a world-class stationless bike-sharing system that won’t disrupt the current mass transit ecosystem in Europe, but only enhances it.”
With its first European launch, Gobee.bike hopes to make the bike the preferred mode of transport in urban areas. The company plans to extend its service to other countries and aims to operate in ten cities across Europe by the end of 2017.