SINGAPORE: Ride-hailing company Grab is moving into the bike and e-scooter sharing business with a new mobile app that gives users access to bikes and devices from four operators, it announced on Friday (Mar 9).
To be piloted at Sentosa in the first half of this year before being rolled out at other venues, GrabCycle users can use shared bikes and e-scooters from Grab's mobility partners - oBike, GBikes, Anywheel and PopScoot. Users can pay using their GrabPay credit accounts which are linked to the main Grab app.
Singapore is the first country in Southeast Asia that Grab is launching the app in and there are plans for it to be available regionally as well, according to Mr Reuben Lai, head of GrabVentures. “Our focus is to test it out to make sure we get it right here and if consumers love it, then there’s nothing stopping us from continuing to expand throughout Southeast Asia,” he said.
"GrabCycle supplements the public transport network and is in line with the Government's commitment to build a greener and more liveable city," added Mr Lai. "With GrabCycle we move one step closer towards our vision of being a multi-modal platform with transport options to suit every need."
The ride-hailing company has also partnered with local supply chain company YCH to manage proper parking of GrabCycle bikes and devices at locations including Sentosa.
While Grab declined to confirm pricing details, it is understood that booking a shared bike or e-scooter via GrabCycle will be "according to market rates" and that there will be "no added charge" due to booking via the Grab app.
PARTNER COMPANIES HOPING TO BENEFIT
Bike-sharing company Anywheel, one of GrabCycle’s partner companies with an estimated fleet of about 4,000 bikes, said the new service will help more people with their mobility needs.
Said its founder Htay Aung: “Although many may feel that bike-sharing establishments are competitors with car-sharing companies, we believe that our services will reduce the gaps in the transport industry and are complementary to Grab’s business model.”
With about 100 scooters in its fleet, e-scooter rental company Popscoot is one of the companies hoping to gain more exposure from the tie-up. “Consumers and businesses can now access the PopScoot app with greater ease, connect to various modes of transport, and enjoy the convenience of an integrated payment system,” said its co-founder Kelvin Ng.
“With the expanded network of personal mobility devices to include electric scooters, everyone can enjoy a seamless commute, exploring remote and interesting locations quickly with fun and ease,” added Mr Ng.
oBike Singapore general manager Tim Phang says the partnership with GrabCycle is aligned with its “vision of the future of transportation”.
“With this latest initiative, we are confident that it will plug the transportation needs for consumers and augment our leaderships in both the ride-hailing and bike-sharing spaces respectively," said Mr Phang.