Making getting a bike accessible and affordable.
The problem is that for students and low-income workers, travelling is generally too expensive and inconvenient. In the ACT there are roughly 125,000 people that ride their bike, but only 2% use their bike as transportation. We want to change this, we want to make using a bike a realistic transportation option. This is especially important for people that want to cut costs and get where they need to go. Our second aim is to help our customer segment get an electric bike to make travelling easier.
Our main customer segment will be students and low-income workers. Our second customer segment are retired or other workers that prefer to commute. We will allow our customers to have another, cheaper alternative to riding a bike by giving our customer segment access to cheaper bikes and electric bikes. This will allow our customer segment to go where they need to go while remaining affordable, healthy and environmentally conscious. Another benefit of riding an electric bike is if the rider needs to travel longer distances an electric-bike is a solution. Electric-bikes are also good for the ‘lazy traveller’ that hates exerting energy on a bike.
Our main competitors for our customer segment are cars and public transportation (with walking and bikes as the smaller competitors).
Cars are generally reliable and provide users a way to get where they want to go. Cars are a solution for people that require to travel long distance in a short amount of time. Public transportation allows similar convenience of travel almost anywhere however, without the convenience that car ownership allows.
Our venture is an improvement of these competitors for our target. Before we explain why, let’s define who our target market is and what they’re looking for.
Our target are either one of two; They own a car but due to some variables find it inconvenient for transportation. They complain about parking, petrol price, traffic and maintenance costs. These people tend to live near their destination and therefore would benefit from not having to own a car. Bike or electric-bike rental would be a solution for these customers.
The second target; tend to commute by bus and/or walk or ride to their destination. These people tend to find public transportation ineffective. They often complain that their bus route isn’t direct enough to their destination and that their bus doesn’t get where they want to go quick enough. They find having to walk and bus everywhere inconvenient and uncomfortable. If they do own a bike they tend not to ride it enough because it doesn’t allow them to get where they want to go quickly enough or they are just too lazy to ride one.
We offer a solution to this target as we allow an affordable bike-sharing system.
If they decide not to catch a bus then an electric-bike is still an adequate transport method to get where they want to go (although some challenges present that we will consider). If there is a bike owner that is too lazy to ride a bike an electric-bike is a solution as an electric-bike makes it easier to travel and needs less energy to be exerted to ride.
Note: ‘Bus’ can also be relevant for light rail or other modes of public transportation.
We believe the scalability of the venture is potentially huge! The reason we believe this is because we are trying to solve transportation problems and these issues are not uncommon. We think a realistic number within the first 2-3 years is 50,000+ riders in the ACT consisting mainly of students and low-income workers. Theoretically we could move to any city in the world that either has a high density of bike riders or a city just like Canberra that struggles to get high bike transportation numbers. To begin with we would definitely consider expanding to other Australian cities and pursue our first international market. It may be difficult to reach China for example, as they are already saturated with Bike sharing offerings (however, our solution is unique, even for China).
There are many things that we’d like to pursue down the track, our ideas range from bringing Hyperloop to Australia, to creating a unique high market bike customisation store. Our most likely idea to pursue is a car option that is affordable and convenient, very similar to our bike-sharing solution. This would allow us not to cannibalise our existing market as the market for this would be people that find it almost impossible to ride a bike in the first place. In the short-term we would potentially either consider collaborating with Uber Eats and Deliveroo or compete with them.
A lot of Bike-sharing systems in the past have gotten one part right, the bikes. But they’ve forgotten about the sharing, which is just as important. We want to bring back the sharing of bike-sharing systems and remove the inconveniences of previous systems. People may struggle with finding transportation that is both convenient and affordable, even with a car you have to deal with traffic, parking, fuel, etc. We want to make peoples lives easier with our bike-sharing solution. The main people that are affected by this problem are students, low-income workers and the commuter. We also want to target the bike owner (Roughly 125,000 people in the ACT) that feel inconvenienced to try and travel by bike. If we’re successful, we will be able to create a highly scalable transportation option and bring it to the people that need it most.
We are a team of dedicated visionaries that have been working to create an early prototype that will allow us to do testing and further customer validation of our venture.
What we’re looking for in a mentor is somebody that will understand the challenges of scaling such a bike-sharing system and to help us understand the economic challenges we will face.
We look forward to working with you.
We will create an online platform to talk to our users.
Both team members fit within the target market that we are aiming for and therefore we are able to empathise with the problems they have.
On the team we have an engineering student with the knowledge to build prototypes and designing expertise which has also been important in the early stages of developing our brand identity. We also have an IT student with experience in marketing, Public Relations and an enthusiasm for business and problem solving.
We have always been good at going back to the problem and taking a human centred design approach to the venture and scrapping things if necessary.
We have connections with the people at the Active Travel Office and we plan to keep in touch with them as we share the same goal of increasing ease of bike riding as a transportation option in the ACT.
We have made progress in the customer validation stage and we are onto the prototyping and testing stage to make sure that we move along steadily.
We need bikes, we’re looking into reusing and repurposing pre-loved bikes for people that need one to get around.