Bolt plans Europe expansion with e-scooter and e-bikes push in 100 cities

Kalila Sangster
·2 min read
Photo: Bolt
Photo: Bolt

Correction: This story has been updated to reflect Usain Bolt has no affiliation with the brand.

Mobility platform Bolt announced plans to bring its micromobility services to more than 100 cities in 2021. The company will operate 130,000 electric scooters and electric bikes next year, which will make it the largest operator of shared light electric vehicles in Europe.

The Estonian-based electric scooter company founded by Markus Villig will invest more than €100m (£90m, $118m) in growing its micromobility business and building its custom-made scooters and bicycles. In 2020, Bolt launched its first custom-made electric scooter model.

Villig said in a statement on Thursday: “We’ve seen that one of the biggest bottlenecks in the transition to shared electric mobility is pricing, which is why we’re excited to bring affordable scooters and electric bikes to even more countries across Europe next season, including the UK.”

The company said scooters are sustainable as they have modular design which makes them easy to repair, an estimated lifespan of up to five years, and are fully recyclable, according to the company.

“Our cities are suffering from traffic, emissions and lack of public space caused by parking. We believe that the future of urban transport is a network of on-demand services — ride-hailing, electric scooters, bikes and other light vehicles,” Villig said.

In September, Bolt pledged to become climate positive — another term for carbon negative — in its electric scooter operations by the end of 2020. Bolt said it would support projects that remove more carbon from the atmosphere than the manufacturing and maintenance of the company’s e-scooters produces.

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This year, Bolt has expanded its micromobility services to 45 cities in 15 countries, including Sweden, France and Portugal.

The mobility platform created an electric bike-sharing service, becoming the first on-demand transportation platform in Europe to have electric bikes, scooters, and ride-hailing under a single brand in one app.

Matt Barrie, Bolt’s country manager, rentals — UK & Ireland, said: “Bolt is supporting national and local legislators as the necessary steps are made towards full legalisation of electric scooters in the UK and Ireland.

“Bolt’s unique multi-modal customer proposition will unlock tremendous value in providing urban citizens with the appropriate sustainable transportation options, to quickly, safely and affordably move around their city.”

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