Micromobility explores the disruption to urban transport that comes from new electric, lightweight utility vehicles. Using the history of computing as a framework, we unpack how e-bikes, scooters and more will change how people get around cities.



episode 73: A Slow and Steady Approach to Micromobility - Ben Bear from Spin

This week Oliver interviews Ben Bear, Chief Business Officer at Spin, the micromobility company backed by Ford and which operate in 65 markets across the US. They dig into their service and how they’re different from others in the industry. It’s a great discussion - Spin really come across as a the tortoise in an industry of hares. With micromobility adoption being a long term prospect their focus on sustainability for what will inevitably be a decades long play is an interesting counter to others in the industry.


- Spin’s approach in COVID-19

- The difference that Spin has in market, including:

—Their use of Swiftmile charging stations (Swiftmile) from a tendering and business operations perspective.

—the efforts to integrate into MaaS

- Why being backed by Ford makes them more resilient and able to focus on longer-term planning and outcomes, and why this is attractive to cities. - How has he seen the regulatory environment change in the time that they’ve been operating.

- How do they see the owned and leased micromobility business model competing in the ‘market for miles’, and whether they have plans to expand into these area leveraging Spin’s brand or Ford’s distribution.

- Their efforts at lobbying for better street infrastructure in the cities that they operate.

Thanks also to our sponsor for the episode, Populus.ai. Populus are building digital tools that assist government agencies to manage their curbs, streets and sidewalks with access to intelligent data and analytics tools. Last week, they announced their Open Streets Initiative to provide cities with digital solutions to identify and communicate slow and safe street policies. Oakland, California recently announced that 74 miles of streets would be closed to through vehicle traffic in order to make it safer for pedestrians, and small sustainable modes to travel for essential trips and create more room for social distancing. Populus works with cities around the world, from Buenos Aires to Baltimore - to help build trust between operators and regulators to see shared mobility become the big success that we think it can be. They run webinars and produce some of the best editorial content about the impact of micromobility on cities in the US that we’ve seen - if you’re looking to educate yourself better on the space, and/or are looking for tools to build trust with your local government to help take shared micromobility to the next level, check them out.


 2020-05-22  40m