Monday, 14 August 2017

Photo of the Day: Bike Sharing

A Gobee bike along Victoria Road, west of Kennedy Town of all places!
Gobee Bike is a Hong Kong initiative in the bike-sharing business. It launched in April to lacklustre fanfare when it turned out the app was only available on Android and not iPhones on the first day.

Then a few days later it was back in the headlines because it was discovered that several of its green bikes were in the Shing Mun River in Sha Tin, while others were found damaged.

But somehow earlier this month, Gobee Bike got HK$9 billion -- yes billion -- from internet-of-things fund led by Mail.Ru co-founder Dmitry Grishin, with Alibaba's Hong Kong entrepreneurship fund kicking in some of the dough too.

To start up the service, Gobee previously got pre-launch seed money led by Swiss Founders Fund.

Hong Kong people are naturally skeptical about bike sharing -- not many people even ride bikes to start with since a good part of the area is too hilly, and also bike lanes are relegated to the New Territories, where leisure bike riders clog up the paths for more serious ones.

A stunning view further up from where the bike was...
So it was to my great surprise when I was walking up Victoria Road towards Pokfulam to see a Gobee Bike parked on the sidewalk. How the heck did it get all the way from the New Territories to here?

I walked and ran a bit further along Victoria Road and then turned back to go home to see the green bicycle still there!

In any event one does wonder if Gobee is making any money and who are using the bikes anyway?

Just seems like the wrong service to launch in the city when drivers don't care to share the road, nor pay much attention to pedestrians either!

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