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July 9, 2024

More Americans Are Riding Bikes Than Ever Before—So Why Are Sales Soft?

Plus, Prince William digs e-scooters.


Welcome to the Micromobility Newsletter, your weekly digest of important events and industry news in the world of personal transportation.


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What You Need to Know Today

In the wake of the COVID-induced e-bike boom, more American adults are cycling than at any point since 2000.

Image Credit: National Sporting Goods Association

More ridership is amazing for the health and well-being of individuals and cities, but as anyone in the industry can tell you, sales have slowed down significantly since the pandemic, leaving retailers in a tight spot. Let’s look at Germany, for example. According to a new survey, nearly a quarter (24.7%) of Germans now own an electric bike, up from 15.2% in 2020. As the data shows, a ton of people bought e-bikes during the height of COVID, which at the time put severe strain on global supply chains. But when lockdowns ended, demand cooled, leaving e-bike shops with a different problem: excess inventory. Check out the German inventory data below…

Image Credit: ZIV

So the question is, when will consumer demand return? In a new report, global investment bank Houlihan Lokey and consultancy Kearney conclude that, despite the recent downturn, the bike industry is poised for significant medium-to-long-term growth. Interestingly the study notes unit volume is expected to remain flat in Europe and North America for the foreseeable future, but market value will grow anyway. Why? Because of the increasing popularity of e-bikes over acoustic bikes… You can expect us to delve deeply into this topic—with exclusive market data—in our webinar with McKinsey later this week.

Anyway, moving on: A crowdfunding contributor sued e-bike startup Delfast for non-delivery and won. Here’s what happened.

UK startup Zedify just secured £4 million in funding to open a new Midlands e-cargo micro hub this October.

Image Credit: Zedify

The runaway success of e-bikes in Europe offers an interesting blueprint for the US. The big takeaway for government officials is that financial assistance and safe infrastructure are both essential for adoption.

Speaking of financial assistance, Minnesota’s e-bike rebate program came back online last week, and within the first 18 minutes, 14,000 applications were submitted. However, due to funding limits, the program could only issue 1,300 rebates in the initial round…

Cycle, a German e-bike subscription service, is accelerating its UK expansion by acquiring Ebike4Delivery.

Image Credit: Ebike4Delivery

The New York City Department of Transportation received a $5.6M federal grant to support the development of e-cargo bikes and microhubs for last-mile delivery, along with other green modalities.

Following a massive recall, the Accell Group believes that it can restore customer trust in Babboe by implementing more stringent quality control like it does with its other brands, such as Raleigh, Batavus, and Ghost.

Prince William went viral on TikTok riding an e-scooter around Windsor Castle. Maybe his newfound hobby might influence the UK government to finally legalize e-scooters on public roads.


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