Automotive supplier Bosch is preparing to launch an electric scooter sharing in Berlin. Rumours were making the rounds in the German capital for weeks. Today, a camera crew and an electric scooter zoomed around Hackescher Markt – right in front of the office of electrive.com, the industry service for electric transport. The film team was out for promo shots apparently. Stickers on the sides of the black-green scooter point to the name of this new mobility offering: COUP. While the film team was tight-lipped at first, they eventually confirmed that this is the “new Bosch scooter sharing” and that its start is imminent. A website called joincoup.com is live but shows no content but the logo as of yet. A Bosch spokesman confirmed the brand’s belonging to the Bosch Group when questioned by electrive.com. He also said that the online content could “change tomorrow.”
Bosch wants to free float 500 to 700 electric scooters in the streets of Berlin, electrive.com learned. The COUP project was set up together with the Boston Consulting Group’s digital offshoot Digital Ventures and promoted at the highest level. The electric scooters come from Gogoro. The Taiwanese manufacturer had only recently announced its European expansion. Their Smartscooter usually feature battery swapping stations. If this will be the case in Berlin remains unclear at this stage.
The electric two-wheeler sharing poses a definitive challenge to the previous market leader eMio, who had launched in summer 2015 with 150 electric scooters, which are also not bound to stations. Bosch is advancing its activities in this area via the Bosch Start-up GmbH in Ludwigsburg, current job offerings reveal. Adverts look for people to “become part of a team that develops a new mobility service from scratch.” Furthermore, terms like car sharing, bike sharing and scooter sharing are used. It seems to be a COUP indeed. One can look forward to a new player on Berlin’s mobility market. After all, the German capital provides the ideal testing ground for large scale transport activities.
Copy & pictures: Peter Schwierz
Translation: Nora Manthey
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