Ofo applies for e-scooter scheme license in San Francisco

Lloyd Doyle
June 12, 2018

However, only five of the applicants will be granted a permit by the city, with a decision expected by the end of the month.

San Francisco temporarily stopped all use of the scooters in sharing programs at it attempts to restore order in the streets and sidewalks, as the most recent transportation trend has exploded with enormous popularity.

The quality of the Chinese unicorn's bicycles is much derided and although the company does not yet have a scooter design, it would launch thousands of scooters in via its new scheme in summer 2018 if granted a license, as wells as e-bikes across the United States, according to the head of ofo North America. According to a report from Axios, both Uber and Lyft have applied for permits under a San Francisco pilot program aimed at putting a cap on the number of shared scooters on city streets.

Lyft has been in talks with officials of San Francisco city to discuss possible permit through applications and has proposed some prototypes as at last month according to TechCrunch. It's also interested in other types of shareable transportation. Uber now has the lead after buying Jump in April for about $200 million.

Another transportation company, Lyft has followed suit and has shown considerable interest to go beyond cars.

Neither Uber nor Lyft immediately responded to a request for comment from this news organization. At least 10 companies applied for the permits, but only five permits will be granted, the city has said.

It cost the companies $5,000 to apply for a permit; winners will pay the city $25,000 a year and contribute $10,000 to a property fix and maintenance endowment. The other companies are Scoot, Skip, Razor, Hopr, USSCooter and Ridecell.

Scooter heavyweights Bird, Spin and Lime which already run e-scooter hire schemes in the city have applied as have vehicle ride-sharing firms Lyft and Uber (via Jump, the scooter brand it bought). We are waiting to see the outcome; expecting the ride-sharing service giants to compete fiercely when they finally gain access to the lucrative-looking market.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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