Tuesday, 21 August, 2018

Lyft buys Motivate, firm behind Biketown, Citi Bike

BLUEbikes docked in Kendall Square Lane Turner Globe Staff BLUEbikes docked in Kendall Square
Russell Knight | 03 July, 2018, 20:20

Uber, Lyft's biggest competitor, bought the bike-sharing service JUMP for close to $200 million back in April and renamed it Uber Bike.

That stands in contrast to companies like Motivate, who by choice or by necessity has forged relationships with city governments and corporate sponsors across the country to meet varying financial or regulatory obligations for each jurisdiction.

Motivate runs New York's Citi Bike, Chicago's Divvy, Washington D.C.'s Capital Bikeshare, and other services in major US cities. Motivate's bike maintenance operation will split out into an independent business, but will still service Lyft Bikes bicycles.

We founded Lyft with the mission to reduce personal vehicle ownership.

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Motivate operates some of the most recognizable bike operations in the US, working with cities like Chicago, San Francisco, Oakland, New York City, Washington D.C., and Portland to launch, manage, and maintain bike share operations.

"Together, we believe that integrating our services in partnership with the public sector will transform the urban transportation landscape, increase bike ridership and make our cities better", said Motivate executive chairman Steve Koch in a statement on Monday.

The deal brings Lyft into a crowded market.

As a result of the acquisition, Lyft is launching a new business called Lyft Bikes, which will incorporate Motivate's technology, corporate functions and city contracts. Lyft says existing sponsorship agreements will remain in place in the short-term. The District of Columbia Department of Transportation did not immediately respond to questions on how Capital Bikeshare could be affected, and whether it planned to retain Motivate - now Lyft Bikes.

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