Lime Scooters Take Off
Lime is a transportation company that lets you hire scooters, bikes and even cars. Founded in January 2017, the company is already valued at over $1.1 billion (Dec 2018), and has attracted investment dollars from giants like Uber and Alphabet. Recently, Lime has started withdrawing its bikes to focus solely on e-scooters, which may give it an advantage over its competitors.
Lime has many strengths and weaknesses. It is a well-recognized brand, especially amongst young people; college campuses are crowded with Lime scooters. It offers a fun and fast way to get around. The scooters operate on a dockless system, which makes picking up a Lime convenient and cheap, and lowers operating costs. Lime also has weaknesses. Countless accidents have hurt people as well as the company’s popularity.
Since e-scooters are new on city roads, there are no regulations or safety measures in place to protect riders. Consequently, many local councils have placed bans on Lime scooters. Lime also has to constantly invest in maintaining its equipment, which is often stolen.
There are opportunities as well as threats for Lime. In an increasingly eco-conscious society, the carbon free e-scooter market has potential to expand. As driving and public transportation becomes more expensive, and more people move to urban areas, companies like Lime have an opening. Improving technology, especially battery technology, can also facilitate growth. The biggest threat to Lime is its many competitors; Bird, Jump and Skip offer a similar service to the same consumers. Market saturation is a potential threat. Lime is also vulnerable to changing regulations from local councils.
Despite the concerns, the e-scooter market and Lime are thriving. This growth could slow down as the novelty wears off. But if we get used to this new way of transportation, Lime may be a part of a revolution.
Written by Sonakshi Dua, Edited by Rachel Weissman & Alexander Fleiss