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.
How Micromobility Can Save The World
In celebration of Earth Day 2021, Oliver interviews Horace about his latest project - looking at the carbon emissions in the transport sector and modelling the pathways for the current options. You can probably imagine where they get to, but they don’t want to spoil the show.
This is still a work in progress, and they are putting this out as a primer so that folks may understand the narrative arc, and the background/context of why Horace is looking at this.
Specifically they look at:
- The math of emissions, and why transport is hard
- The lifecycles of vehicles and why the shift to electric cars will take a long time
- The ‘gap’ that exists between existing emissions reduction plans and reality
- Where micromobility might contribute
Also, the next Micromobility America conference is now scheduled for the 23rd of September. It’ll be in Pier 70 in San Francisco and have more than 50 top speakers from the industry, more than 1000 global participants and 500ish startups and brands represented. If you love this space and want to find your tribe here, head to miicromobility.io to find out more details.
Making Micromobility Heavy with Mark Frohnmayer of Arcimoto
Between COVID work stoppages, a massive stock surge, a strategic tech acquisition, partnering with legendary automotive engineer Sandy Munro, and the general fits and starts of pre-production, Arcimoto, maker of semi-enclosed electric three-wheelers, has had an eventful year. This week Oliver interviews their CEO, Mark Frohnmayer, to shed light on the company’s manufacturing progress and long-term ambitions—and why he believes heavy micromobility is vital to the future of electric vehicles.
This is the audio version of the video from the Micromobility Show on Youtube. Check out the link to the video here (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NTzO9wekyiA).
If you like this, you will also likely like the interview we did with Mark back in November 2019 on Episode 46.
Specifically, they dig into:
- What is Arcimoto and the FUV?
- How Mark got into lightweight electric vehicles
- The no man’s land between bikes and cars
- Arcimoto’s coming "Platform 2"
- The regulatory situation for 3-wheeled vehicles
- Licensing requirements to drive
- Sandy Munro’s influence
- Technical debt of Arcimoto
- Arcimoto’s mini delivery vehicle, the Deliverator
- How Arcimoto sees competition
The first micromobility company on the Nasdaq - Salvatore Palella from Helbiz
This week Oliver brings you an exclusive interview with Salvatore Palella, CEO of Helbiz, which is about to list on the NASDAQ as the first shared micromobility player to go public globally. It’s a fascinating conversation about the current state of the market, how valuations are reached in the SPAC space, and what possibilities are enabled for micromobility by the public markets.
Specifically, they dig into:
- Salvatore’s background, including as one of the youngest professional football club owners in Europe.
- The origin story through to the current state of Helbiz, including where they started, how they operate and how many vehicles they have.
- They talk through the SPAC fundraising journey, and how Salvatore raised early capital for the company.
- They talk through the post-public market plans for the company including thoughts on mergers and acquisitions strategy.
- How they have viewed hardware.
- A discussion of their early forays into cryptocurrencies, and what Salvatore thinks the future will look like for advertising-driven micromobility.
- A discussion about the operational and behavioural differences between US & EU markets
109: How camera-based positioning changes micromobility with Jameson Detweiler from Fantasmo
This week, Oliver interviews Jameson Dietweiler, CEO of Fantasmo.
Fantasmo has been around since 2014 to build maps for machines, and has been working specifically on micromobility since the earliest days in 2017. With the recent announcement that they’ve partnered with Tier to roll out an innovative phone based parking verification technology Oliver was excited to have a chance to bring them on the show. They use camera based positioning to better locate vehicles like scooters and ebikes in cities where often GPS is an insufficeint technology to provide highly accurate location data.
They talk about the pivots that the company has made and why their ultimate goal is to own the basemaps that are used for positioning in cities all over the world, using micrombility as the first step.
At Micromobility Industries, we’ve been long excited about companies that are building software layers to the micromobility experience. It also provides a good answer to regulators and city officials who ask how hard it is to enforce parking solutions for shared operators across cities, which as we know was an early issues with shared schemes.
It can be a little hard to visual, so we would recommend that you check out the short video here [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BPsXU0Vbctg].
Specifically, they dig into:
- The origin story of Fantasmo and how Jameson came to be working on ‘maps for machines’
- The details of the pivots that they’ve made as a company - on-device to parking on phone via cloud etc.
- They talk through the Tier pilot and what they’re seeing in the early data.
- How they think about the move of computation into mobility, and where it’ll sit (discussing Horace’s thesis that these vehicles will become computing platforms)
- They discuss how defensible the moat for a company like Fantasmo is vs. Google or Apple opening up an API for this based on their mapping tech
- How the the funding environment is for a software company in the boom-bust Micromobility industry.
The Magic of Operational Optimization - More Rides, More Money with Joseph Brennan of Zoba
This week, Oliver interview Joseph Brennan, co-founder of Zoba, an analytics company working on optimizing micromobility operations. It’s a pretty nerdy topic, but the topline is that their clients have seen up to 74% more rides per scooter simply from operational tweaks that Joseph and the team have suggested. As micromobility operations get more sophisticated and cities get stricter on operators and rule enforcement, services like what Zoba offers will become even more important.
This was originally published as a video on our Youtube channel. Check it out here - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79ipNkpCEN4.
Specifically, they dig into:
- The history of Zoba and how Joseph and his team came to found the company.
- The variables that they’re working with, and how they engage with customers
- A discussion on the benefits of new technologies coming down the pipe, including swappable batteries.
- The biggest operational challenges for both operators and governments
- How has their business fared in the boom/bust of the wider sharing industry, and what are they seeing now?
- The challenges and opportunity for raising money in the software-for-micromobility space and what he’d recommend to other entrepreneurs.
Unpacking a Scooter Like No Other - Carson Brown, Co-Founder of TAUR Scooters
We're excited to bring you this interview with Carson Brown, co-founder of TAUR Scooters who are building one of the best designed and coolest looking scooters we've seen on the market. With their team based in London, it’s an excellent discussion about the role of design in micro, and why these new vehicles reflect the culture and environment that they’re designed in. We really hope that you enjoy it.
This was originally a Youtube video for Micromobility Industries - if you’re keen to check that out, check out the link here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Elwybg1Vmeo
Specifically they dig into:
- Carson's background working on electric unicycles
- Why they decided to chase after personally owned scooters
- The importance of design in owned objects
- What does their development process look like, and what were the design decisions they had to weigh up.
- How they thought about the TAUR brand from the get go.
- How they think about the 'hard' part of being in hardware, and what they're facing as a company when getting into production
- How they're thinking about support and maintenance
- The irony of designing one of the most innovative personally owned scooters in a market (the UK) where ownership is banned.
- His long term aspirations for TAUR.