Ford jumps into scooter-sharing with Spin acquisition
Ford Motor Company announced on 8 November that it has acquired Spin, an electric scooter-sharing firm based in San Francisco
The startup operates in a similar fashion to other last-mile scooter companies; Spin provides dockless scooters for short-term rent via an app as part of a business model that is rapidly gaining traction across the US.
In a blog post on Medium, Sunny Madra, vice president of ideas incubator Ford X, said the purchase comes at a time of increased mobility choice around the US that has inspired Ford to create a diverse micro-mobility portfolio.
Madra added that Spin had been chosen as its last-mile mobility firm of choice for its leading position in the scooter-sharing market, and for its focus on responsibility and safety.
“Spin is committed to working hand-in-hand with cities and universities to implement micro-mobility solutions responsibly, safely and sustainably as they expand their operations,” Madra said.
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“They do not launch without permission; they share usage data with cities; and they work with local officials and university campuses to design educational tools around parking and riding rules. This approach aligns well with our values at Ford and with our aspiration to be the world’s most trusted company.”
According to Reuters, Ford will invest US$200mn in Spin, which it adds is a relatively small amount compared with investments in and valuations of rival firms in the space such as Lime and Bird.
Lime, Reuters noted, has accrued $450mn in funding with a valuation of over $4bn since it launched in 2017.