China’s bicycle rentals on-demand startup, Ofo is planning to enter the Indian market, according to an Economic Times report. The report claims that the company, which became a unicorn earlier this year might grace the Indian market with its presence by the first half of next year.
The world’s first and largest station-free bike share platform and mobile app, ofo provides sustainable, affordable transportation to all.
China’s bicycle rentals on-demand space has been flourishing at an unprecedented rate with the sector raking in investments worth more than $300 million this year alone. In February this year, Beijing-based Ofo, which is popularly also referred to as the Uber for Bikes, became the first player in the space to have reached the much-coveted $1 billion valuation, thus adding the title unicorn to its name.
Considering the startup has already captured its home market, it makes sense that the company now wants to expand beyond its home market.
“Ofo is currently doing extensive ground research in India, examining government policies and the permissions required where foreign businesses in the transportation sector are concerned, as well as looking into the infrastructural limitations,” the report quotes a person aware about the development.
The person also highlights that considering the fact that sharing economy already exists in India, select state government officials in the country realise that if Ofo enters the country it can significantly help in resolving the congestion issues that the South Asian country is facing. He also shares that the government can also act on building larger regional transit systems that are sustainable and are in line with smart cities plans.
Founded in 2014, Ofo’s mission is to solve the “last mile” problem of urban transportation, helping commuters and travelers get to exactly where they need to go by making bikes accessible to everyone. It is currently one of the world’s leading “station-free” bike-sharing platform operated via an online mobile app.
Since Ofo’s system doesn’t require any docking stations, it provides its users significant flexibility to find and return bikes anywhere, anytime.
In addition to India, the startup backed by Didi Chuxing is also contemplating an expansion into Indonesia by next year.
This development was first reported in Economic Times.