Uber has been working with dockless e-bike firm JUMP in San Francisco since January and has now engineered a takeover of the ten-year-old business.
JUMP was originally founded as Social Bicycles of New York City and was an early adopter of the dockless bike-share model. Its latest bikes – named JUMP – are pedal-assist models, with 250 rolled out in San Francisco in January.
"At Uber, our vision for the future is one where everyone, wherever they live and whatever their income, has access to affordable, reliable transportation," said the company's transportation policy and research lead Andrew Salzberg in a January statement.
Those with the Uber app on their smartphones in the Californian city can book and pay for hiring JUMP bikes via a pilot scheme. There's a “bike” option in the app’s menu located at the top left corner of the home screen.
Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said the acquisition will help bring together "multiple modes of transportation within the Uber app – so that you can choose the fastest or most affordable way to get where you’re going, whether that’s in an Uber, on a bike, on the subway, or more.”
JUMP has 12,000 dockless, GPS-enabled bikes in 40 cities across six countries, including in Brighton in the UK.
JUMP CEO Ryan Rzepecki said:
"When we first began talking to Uber they were going through an extremely difficult time, with negative headlines each week and a massive change in leadership. We expected to find a toxic work environment and a broken culture. Instead, everyone we met was smart, passionate, and genuinely wanted to help our team succeed."
He added: "Through our collaboration we realized that we shared Uber’s vision of multi-modal mobility and had the same goal of decreasing car ownership."