Sunday 22 July 2018

Thieves put brake on Paris bike scheme

Gobee.bike are seen on a sidewalk in Paris, France. REUTERS
Gobee.bike are seen on a sidewalk in Paris, France. REUTERS

Rory Mulholland in Paris

Gobee.bike, the first of several Asian dockless bike-share operators that launched in Paris last year, has announced it is pulling out of the city because thousands of its bicycles were stolen or vandalised.

"Over the months of December and January, the mass destruction of our fleet has become the new entertainment of under-aged individuals, encouraged by content broadly shared on social media,” the Hong Kong startup wrote in an email to its users in the city.

It explained that more than a thousand bikes had been stolen or “privatised” and around 3,400 more had been vandalised, and that despite the 6,400 repairs carried out by its workers, it had decided the scheme was unsustainable.

Gobee.bike, which had around 150,000 users across France, had already thrown in the towel in the northern cities of Lille and Reims as well as the Belgian capital Brussels for similar reasons.

Earlier this month it closed its schemes in the Italian cities of Rome, Milan and Turin.

Irish Independent

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