The founders of Soundcloud, the music streaming app are launching an e-bike subscription start-up, with the hope of building a community of enthusiasts who will ensure the venture is much more sustainable than bike sharing.
The idea for the venture, called DANCE, predates the coronavirus but the spread of the pandemic around the world has hastened a shift to getting around cities on two wheels instead of by car or public transport.
“We were all excited about transforming cities, the climate impact and the health impact of having more people go to work by bike,” said Eric Quidenus-Wahlforss, co-founder and CEO of DANCE, who stepped down from running Soundcloud last year.
“Now, the silver lining of the pandemic is that a lot of cities have said: Let’s just accelerate our micromobility infrastructure.”
Eric’s other partners are Christian Springub and Alexander Ljung, who are also the fellow Co-founder of Jimdo and founder of SoundCloud respectively.
According to the European Cyclists’ Federation, E-Bike sales are booming in Europe, while more than 30 percent of the E-Bikes sold last year in Germany was electric and cities across Europe have built as much as 930 kms of bicycle lanes since March.
This subscription model is quite different than the existing bike sharing models that many businesses are using now a days. In contrast to bike sharing, which has faced numerous events of theft, vandalism and abandoned bikes, the subscription model makes sure riders get an e-bike of their own.
“When you don’t want your bike any more after several weeks or months, you can just stop the subscription service and someone will come and pick the bike up,” said Quidenus-Wahlforss.
For now an invite only service for Berlin starts this week, with subscriptions priced as low as 59 euros/month, which compares to an average selling price of e-bikes of 2,300 euros.
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