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Cities Uber/Lyft

Jump Tries to Show Bike-Sharing Can Be a Good Business

It’s been a year since Jump started renting red electric bikes in San Francisco, challenging the traditional docked, non-motorized bike-share system and foreshadowing the rise of scooters. Jump, bought by Uber last April, is now trying to prove it can run a sustainable business, unlike some troubled Chinese bike-sharing companies Ofo and Mobike.

Jump CEO Ryan Rzepecki wrote in a blog post Friday that its bikes in San Francisco were heavily utilized, clocking in eight trips per bike per day, which is high for bike and scooter firms. Each rider averaged about 10 rides over the year, as the company counted 625,000 trips among 63,000 riders. This indicates the bikes are being used for daily commutes by many riders, a habit that scooter companies generally aren’t yet seeing. 

The next test for Jump is whether it can successfully scale its capital-intensive, operations- heavy business into other big cities. Uber has said it will invest $1 billion into Jump’s expansion into new cities and new vehicle types like scooters this year. Jump probably will play second fiddle to Uber Eats as a business Uber will highlight in the run-up to its IPO, but it’ll still be crucial for the ride-hailing giant. Another challenge is Lyft’s acquisition of Motivate, which controls bike-share contracts in the most lucrative markets in the U.S., including New York, Chicago and Washington, D.C. 

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