The first wave of electric micromobility was shepherded by the (still largely unprofitable, bless them) shared micromobility companies — the Limes and Birds of the world that popularized electric scooters. Now, as gas prices surge, the world burns and more people consider traveling to and from work in a way that’s cheap, sustainable and fun, sales of electric scooters are seeing an uptick.
The global e-scooter market size, which was at around $20.78 billion in 2021, is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 7.8% from 2022 to 2030, according to one study. Given that massive market opportunity, private e-scooter startups are coming out of the woodwork with all sorts of neat little contraptions that fold and whiz and alert riders to impending danger.
I know what you’re thinking. Surely the market is already saturated, and the big dogs at Okai and Segway have already got it covered. But Oscar Morgan, co-founder and CEO of U.K.-based e-scooter startup Bo Mobility, says the industry has been coming at scooter manufacturing all wrong.
“The way scooters have grown up was they took the micro-scooter, and they strapped a lithium ion powertrain to it,” Morgan told TechCrunch. “That’s almost like if Tesla had said, we want to do an electric car, so we’ll strap an electric motor to a Model T Ford.”
Bo launched in Amsterdam in early June at the Micromobility Europe event, but the startup will sell its first scooters in the U.K. The founders all come from automotive and engineering backgrounds. Morgan and co-founder Harry Wills met at Williams Advanced Engineering, where they both worked on programs to deploy Formula One technology into other products and categories. Luke Robus, Bo’s other co-founder, used to work on autonomous cars at Jaguar…