Lime, Dott and Tier won the license for the Paris scooter, leaving Bird at a loss in a key market
According to The Verge, Paris has chosen its electric scooter operator.Thanks to the forward-looking leadership of its mayor, Anne Hidalgo, the city has quickly become a paradise for bicycles, walkers and scooters, and has chosen Lime, Tier and Dott as its partner scooter companies.Each company will receive a two-year contract allowing it to deploy 5,000 electric scooters citywide, a total of 15,000.
The result is a big win for Lime, the SAN francisco-based company, which lists Uber and Google as its main investors.It is also a clear loss for Bird, Lime's main competitor.Bird, a pioneer in scooter sharing, had planned to make Paris its "second home", employing thousands of people to work in its new European hub in Paris.A Bird spokeswoman didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.
Electric scooters, which can be rented through a smartphone app, first hit the streets of Paris in 2018.But then the electric scooter industry took off, leaving about 20,000 scooters on the streets.Hidalgo described the scooters as "anarchist", while Transport Minister Elisabeth Borne told Le Parisien that the city was experiencing the "law of the jungle".
Last year the city announced a plan to control the chaos by choosing three official operators."We need order and rules to keep our roads safe and calm the streets, sidewalks and communities of our cities," Hidalgo said in 2019.
A total of 16 scooter sharing companies responded to the city's tender offer.Lime, the only company to win a contract in America, says it is "delighted to be one of the winners".Berlin-based Tier cheered winning "the world's largest tender for electric scooters".Amsterdam-based Dott posted pictures of its team celebrating on Twitter.
Hidalgo, which recently won re-election almost entirely on a platform that eliminated cars in cities to promote cycling and walking, said scooter operators were chosen based on three criteria: environmental responsibility, user safety and managing scooter maintenance and charging.She also called on scooter riders to respect the rules of the road, noting that 2,500 scooter parking Spaces are being installed across Paris.
The choice of scooter operators in Paris could have profound implications for the micro-mobility industry in Europe and the United States, especially as the coVID-19 pandemic is driving more consolidation and consolidation.Paul Asel, managing partner of NGP Capital and an investor in Lime, told Business Insider in June that the Paris decision is likely to lay the groundwork for a future in which only two or three European companies will operate.
Initially, COVID-19 brought the Shared electric scooter industry to a standstill.The number of users fell sharply as scooter companies towed vehicles off city streets.Bird and Lime, the two largest companies in fleet size and valuation, have made massive layoffs in recent months, eliminating about 580 full-time jobs.
But the industry is slowly recovering, thanks to renewed interest in bicycles and other alternative forms of transport.City dwellers are also using scooters for longer trips as they look for safe ways to get around.Last week, Lime reported that, on average, scooter travel time has increased 34 per cent and distance 18 per cent since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.