Bird being the dockless electric scooter company which already operates electric scooters in over 60 cities throughout Europe, plans to establish one of its largest European hub in Paris. Bird’s “second European home” is what the CEO of the Bird Company Travis VanderZanden calls Paris.
Bird started in 2017 and has grown since then. It launched its first dockless electric scooter rental business on August 2018 in Paris. Since then, the sale of Bird dockless electric scooters has increased proportionally. The Bird’s service center in Paris goes parallelly with the hub where employees are majorly going to perform maintenance tasks of the electric scooters.
“When we launched in Paris nearly a year ago we were blown away by how quickly Parisians took to our service,” said CEO Travis. “The adoption signalled a need and desire for an alternative to cars. The city really is a global leader in the fight against climate change and we want to help them achieve their goals by committing even further to the city.”
Various startups in Paris are believed to have supplied 20000 electric scooters already and they operate on them too. The number is expected to increase almost twice from what it is now by the end of the year. Bird is certainly going to keep up with the promise to create 1000 jobs in Paris. Increase in the number of electric scooters will also increase infractions.
Paris officials have imposed a list of fines for the infractions which has been brought into practice by July 1st. A penalty of €135 (£120) will be charged for riding on the pavement and €35 (£31) fines for blocking the pavement while parked.
Paris police got more strict and careful and are taking up the enforcements up a notch. They already have issued more than 1000 tickets and have confiscated around 600 scooters. A whole new set of surveillance force has also been installed for adding to the security. Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris city describe electric scooters as “anarchic”. The transport minister Élisabeth Borne also commented on the current situation of Paris and said that the city was experiencing “the law of the jungle.”
Patrick Studener, head of Bird in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, said decision was driven by a desire to build up its market in Paris, not to placate policymakers. “France, and especially Paris are important markets for Bird globally, which drove this decision, Paris has been extremely welcoming to new modes of transport in an effort to reduce car usage.”
Last month, the City of Paris announced that it would limit the number of scooter companies in Paris. They will hand out two or three licenses to operate. And Bird certainly would want to be in the list. Kat Borlongan, director of La French Tech, said: “It’s great that start-ups scaling as quickly as Bird understand what France has become: a country where some of the world’s most ambitious tech companies can grow and scale.”