SoundCloud’s co-founder is launching an e-bike subscription service in Berlin
Dance is a new e-bike subscription service launched by the co-founder of SoundCloud.Invitation-only programs, including delivery, maintenance and anti-theft protection, will be launched in Berlin this month.It's the latest service to try to take advantage of the e-bike craze by leveraging the Netflix or Spotify transport model.
Dance was co-founded by SoundCloud founders Eric Quidenus-Wahlforss and Alexander Ljung, as well as Christian Springub, co-founder of web design start-up Jimdo.Their claim rests on two hard truths about e-bikes: they are expensive, typically selling for 1,700 euros ($2,000) or more, and vulnerable to theft.Dance hopes to address these issues while replicating the success of various music subscription services.
"Music is one of the first industries to undergo the transition from ownership to subscription," Ljung said in a statement."At SoundCloud, we've helped make that transition and built the largest and most passionate music community in the world.Now we want to transfer that experience to the travel space and start a campaign that will ultimately make our cities more livable."
"Now we want to move that experience to mobile."
Interested customers in Berlin will be asked to sign up to a waiting list and will then be invited to order an "entry price" of €59 a month.The price includes services, anti-theft protection and concierge services - which the company says can deliver bikes to customers' front doors "within 24 hours".And if the bikes are stolen, Dance says it will "replace them immediately".
As for the bikes themselves, the company offered few details.Photos provided by the company appear to show a road bike with sweepback handlebars, a rear-hub motor, a belt driver and a battery mounted on the lower tube.It will be equipped with a 250W motor (required by EU law), a 45km range and removable batteries.Due to The cobblestone streets of Berlin, the bikes will be equipped with high-quality tyres with suspension, the spokesman said, adding: "We will release details of the global launch of the second generation of Dance bikes in due course."
Whether dance can create a profitable business remains to be seen, but it may be a long way from being understood.The company has a number of deep-pocketed venture Capital firms, including Berlin-based VC BlueYard Capital, and its investors Ilkka Paananen(Founder and CEO of Supercell), Jeannette zuFurstenberg (Lafemiglia), and KevinP.Ryan(AlleyCorp founder and CEO), Neil Parikh(Casper founder and CSO), Bjarke Ingels(Big Architects founder and CEO) and others.
Dance isn't the first company to offer a micro-car subscription service.It will compete with Swapfiets, which is already established in some European markets.The Dutch company recently added e-bikes to its catalogue and launched them in Berlin in July.And in the US, Bird and Lime have been trying to order electric scooters, with mixed results.