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Electric scooters may not be around for long [The Verge]

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chawes
747 Rider Guru
 Posted 11 months, 3 weeks ago

The article is light, but watch the video for more detail.

The fundamental numbers don’t really add up because scooters don’t bring in enough money to cover their cost. Ride-sharing is wildly unsustainable, and if the business continues on its current path, it’s entirely possible that these scooters will end up in a mass graveyard like those viral photos from China.

The video reveals some interesting numbers. Each scooter costs over $500 for the companies to purchase. In order to recoup the purchase cost, these companies need these scooters to run for 5 months or more, but they are finding that they only last 30 days if they are lucky. Quartz crunched some numbers and found that on average, each scooter only brings $67 in revenue for the company.

https://www.theverge.com/2019/4/12/18307591/electric-scooter-sharing-bird-lime-uber-economics-big-picture

The whole model just seems unsustainable. Like the rest of the rideshare industry, these companies are hemorrhaging investors' money, and it's not clear how they can turn that around.

Comments

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    MelissaMyers
    139 Rider
     11 months ago

    Something we all knew all along. For a $1 trips, there's on way the economics work out.

    But there’s a dark side to scooter-sharing (and I’m not talking about the vandalism or the sidewalk clutter or even all those injured riders). The fundamental numbers don’t really add up because scooters don’t bring in enough money to cover their cost. Ride-sharing is wildly unsustainable, and if the business continues on its current path, it’s entirely possible that these scooters will end up in a mass graveyard like those viral photos from China.

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    DimSumUng
    127
     11 months ago

    and these companies are being valued at A BILLION DOLLARS

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    you_know_nothing
    42 Rider
     11 months ago

    The problem with the rideshare industry is that it's a commodity market. The ONLY way for companies to compete is on price. There is no real way to improve the service. All these scooter companies have the same exact scooters, which work fine for their purpose. Even in this video they point out that the improvements that Bird and Lime are working on for these scooters are only to make them more durable, which doesn't benefit the rider in any way.

    The rideshare companies are the same. They all have great drivers. Heck, we all know that in a lot of cases they are the exact same drivers, who drive for multiple companies. And they all offer similar functionality in their apps. So it's just a race to the bottom. No real room for competition.

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    lionfool
    236 Rider Driver
     11 months ago

    It's sustainable. They just have to charge more for them. People would pay.

    Of course, they can't do that, because they have competition. And the competition has rabid, greedy investors just like they do, who will keep shoveling cash into them in the vain hope of "winning" someday.

    Good luck guys!

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    cheesehead
    521 Driver Rider
     11 months ago

    Silicon Valley be crazy...

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    outlandish
    204 Rider Driver
     11 months ago

    The rest of the rideshare industry at least employs people. Gotta give them that. These scooters just seem like a long-term loser.