Ofo's licence set to be cancelled after it misses extended deadline to remove bikes

Ofo's licence set to be cancelled after it misses extended deadline to remove bikes

Ofo bicycles file
File photo of ofo bicycles. (Photo: AFP/Eric Piermont)

SINGAPORE: Chinese bike-sharing company ofo is set to have its operating licence cancelled, after it missed an extended deadline to remove its bicycles from public spaces.

The Land Transport Authority (LTA) said in a statement on Wednesday (Apr 3) that it has issued ofo with a notice of intention to cancel its licence. Ofo has up to 14 days to make a written representations to the authority.

READ: Former ofo exec to launch new e-scooter sharing service in Singapore

READ: LTA suspends Ofo's operating licence, bikes to be removed from public spaces

The original deadline for ofo to clear its bikes was pushed to Mar 28 from Mar 13 after ofo headquarters informed LTA that it was in "advanced stages of negotiations" to partner another party to resume operations and fulfil the conditions of its licence. 

"Despite the deadline extension, ofo has not complied," the authority said.

READ: Bike-sharing firm Ofo's dramatic fall a warning to China's tech investors

OFO'S TROUBLES

On Feb 14, LTA suspended ofo's licence after the bike-sharing operator failed to comply with regulatory requirements, and ordered it to clear its bikes by Mar 13.

In addition to not ensuring that its bicycles were parked within designated areas by using a QR-code system, ofo had also failed to reduce its bicycle fleet to the stipulated maximum size of 10,000 despite multiple warnings, LTA said then. 

READ: Ofo has 'practically ceased' operations, sacked employees say, no official notice made to LTA

Last December, ofo's chief executive Dai Wei said the start-up backed by Alibaba Group was facing "immense" cash flow problems.

It was also reported that ofo owes at least two of its former logistic vendors around S$700,000 for their services.

At its peak, ofo had bike fleets in more than 20 countries, from France to Australia and the United States.

READ: The Big Read: Why Singapore has yet to become a cycling paradise — and it’s not just about the heat

Source: CNA/nh(aj)

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