How do you see the landscape for micro-mobility adoption in the Middle East region?
There has been a rise in demand for shared electric scooters and other micro-mobility modes in recent years. Residents in the Middle East, specifically the UAE, are now looking for ways to streamline their day, including alternative transportation methods. We have witnessed increased adoption and growth for micro-mobility in the region and understand the importance of closing the gap between travel and facilitating first and last-mile journeys.
How are advancements in robotics driving micro-mobility innovation?
Without a doubt, micro-mobility and its increasing adoption will play a significant role in decarbonising transportation around the world. Moreover, it is becoming increasingly clear that technology plays a vital role in providing residents with ease in transport accessibility. For instance, in the near future, we plan to introduce a new computer vision-based driver assistance technology that – paired with the latest internet of things (IoT) – can detect traffic violations and collisions and reckless riding on the scooter. Riders who do not follow the rules and regulations will be alerted. The new technology is currently being tested privately and will be rolled out in cities worldwide in the coming months. The new feature, which aims to solve the most pressing problem of micro-mobility in all cities, is enabled by GPS technology and allows for high positional accuracy and centimeter-level mapping.
Why is e-mobility here to stay?
The Covid-19 pandemic changed the way we go to work and travel. Even before the pandemic, events were moving towards e-mobility. This is undoubtedly one of the better developments to have come out of the pandemic. E-mobility is here to stay as it is becoming the most accessible mode of transportation for riders first and last mile. It is a sustainable mode of transportation that provides ease of access to residents whilst reducing carbon emissions.
How do you stand apart from your competition?
We operate in over 185 cities worldwide, which has given us the knowledge to adapt our operations in each environment to suit the needs of the residents and the cities alike. We are trusted by many transportation authorities around the globe and are involved in finding the best rules and regulations for creating a thriving micro-mobility scene to support the growth of our sector. We are currently the only international operator fully dedicated to the region, which is shown by the number of countries and cities we operate in the Middle East. We are also pleased to be the first micro-mobility provider to be fully climate neutral, allowing us to set the industry standards for sustainability.
What are your plans for the year ahead?
With the acquisition of Spin, the year 2022 started with a significant move for us, following the purchases of Europe’s top bike-share player nextbike, the Italian subsidiary of Wind Mobility, as well as Hungarian tech agency Makery. In October last year, we announced a $ 200m Series D funding round closing. By 2022, we are looking at expanding into more cities in the Middle East. With the launch of e-bikes in Bahrain and Qatar, we are one of the first micro-mobility providers to offer users two different types of vehicles in one app.