China's Mobike has unveiled a dockless e-bike at a press conference in Beijing. The pedal-assisted bike will be introduced both in China and international markets, said company founder Hu Weiwei.
She said: “Demand for e-bikes is growing. We believe that they will complement our original bikes, and will further improve city life for both our users and cities themselves by reducing the reliance on cars.”
Mobike has nine million bikes and 200 million registered users around the world. Earlier this year the company was acquired by digital specialist Meituan Dianping in a $1 billion deal.
Mobike’s service has now been integrated into the Meituan platform, with users in China being able to hire a Mobike directly from the Meituan app.
At the press launch of the e-bike Mobike also announced that it is to remove deposits to all users in China, and enable deposit refunds in China as the company abolishes its deposit scheme.
In order to alleviate the problem of "dumped" dockless bikes Mobike has also announced it has created a recycling programme for its bikes. The company claims this is the first such initiative to be introduced in the bike sharing industry.
In partnership with Dow, China Recycling Resources and Tianjin Xinneng Recycling Resources Mobike will ensure that all parts of its bikes are recycled, either for components for new bikes or for raw materials.
Weiwei said: “The bicycle can change the world, but we must ensure that even when a bike can no longer roll, its parts can be either re-used or be turned into raw material for other uses.”