The Profitability of Bike Sharing

The extraordinary growth of bike-sharing operators, especially Chinese and U.S. firms, has been fueled by a wall of venture capital (see table below) investment. The top companies have reached unicorn valuations and have attracted the interest of strategic acquirers. M&A has been particularly frenzied in China with Ofo and Mobike being acquired by large financial conglomerates. Uber and Lyft have also entered the space through acquisition of some large U.S. operators. Uber acquired Jump for $200 million and Lyft took over Motivate for about $250 million.