MoBike, a Chinese-based bike sharing company, is preparing for some major changes soon. The company's Europe office is fund raising $20 million as they plan to separate their operations in the continent. Mobike would keep 49% of the spun off company.
It had previously been reported that the company is in the process of spinning off its European operations as part of a wider retreat from global operations. Our sources have confirmed that the outside investment and spinoff would value the European portion of the business at between $80 million and $100 million.
A source close to the company also tells us that the deal is expected to close by the end of June. The plan is for Paul Zhu, currently European Regional General Manager for Mobike, to become CEO of the new EU Mobike.
Mobike has operations in the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and The Netherlands, but it is not clear how many users it currently has in the region, or indeed globally. As it has shuttered operations in some cities in the region — most recently in Newcastle in the north of England — Mobike is also slowly rolling out services elsewhere — for example, this week in Padua, Italy.
Steve Milton, a UK spokesperson for Mobike, declined to comment for this article.
Bike-sharing startups, in which people use apps to find, ‘unlock’ and pay for bike rentals, were hailed as the next hot area for on-demand transportation for urban dwellers, following on from the fast growth of car-based services like Uber and Lyft (and more recently followed by scooters and e-bikes). Dozens of bike startups were collectively pumped up with hundreds of millions of dollars in funding as they ramped up their inventories to compete against each other.
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