While Uber, Didi and China’s ride-hailing market were all the talk in 2014 and 2015, it is all about Ofo, Mobike, Bluegogo and China’s bike-sharing market in 2016 and 2017.
With approximately 819 million people living in China’s cities, the urban transportation market is one of many opportunities and ample rivalry.
Bicycles have always been a major part of Chinese traffic, but now the streets of cities such as Shanghai and Beijing are flooded with bicycles more than ever due to the explosive popularity of bike sharing startups.
These bikes are unlocked and tracked using smartphone apps and can be rented for around 1 RMB (±0.15$) per hour or per half hour.
Although the main players are ofo, Mobike, and Bluegogo, there are also many other Chinese bike sharing companies such as Hello Bike, Youon or Coolqi. Some information about the big three:
Ofo (ofo共享单车) (backed by Xiaomi and Didi):
– Company founded in 2014
– First bike-sharing service provider in China.
– Started by students from Beijing University, led by Dai Wei.
– Services first launched in Beijing in 2015.
– Trial launch in Cambridge in April 2017.
– 128950 followers on Weibo.
Mobike (摩拜单车) (backed by Tencent):
– Founded in 2014 by CEO Wang Xiaofeng.
– First trial period in December 2015 in Shanghai.
– Officially launched in Shanghai on April 22, 2016.
– Beijing launch: September 1st, 2016.
– Now available in, amongst others, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, and also in Singapore.
– 65346 followers on Weibo.
– Founded in 2016.
– Headquartered in Tianjin, CEO is Gang Li (李刚).
– Also launched in San Francisco.
– 76705 fans on Weibo
Bike sharing is easy, cheap and convenient, but it also has its downsides as the streets of cities like Beijing are cluttered with bicycles, often hindering pedestrians and cars.
The city government has therefore proposed new regulations in order to combat the chaos caused by the booming bike-sharing market.
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