Investors continue to flood electric scooter startups with cash in spite of the pandemic, with Sweden’s Voi raising a $160 million round from New York fund The Raine Group.
Founded in 2018, Voi offers scooter rental services across more than 45 cities in 11 European countries from its base in Stockholm. It doesn’t operate in the US or Asia.
Riders can unlock and rent a Voi scooter by scanning a QR code on the vehicle with an app. Users are charged a fixed base rate for unlocking the scooter and are then charged by the minute for usage with the cost depending on the city.
Its new funding comes hot on the heels of Japanese investing giant SoftBank’s investment into German scooter rival Tier as part of a $250 million mega-round.
E-scooters have proved, much like ride hailing previously, to be a capital-intensive industry with identikit startups requiring cash to fund a grab for market share.
The entry of SoftBank into Tier and now The Raine Group into Voi demonstrate a new maturity in the industry, according to Fredrik Hjelm, Voi’s CEO.
“Growth funds are stepping into this space and they want more certainty when they invest,” Hjelm told Business Insider .
“They want three to five times the return on capital rather than hundred-to-one moonshots which shows mobility is a mature and solid industry, not a boom and bust industry anymore. This deal is a sign of strength not just for Voi but for the whole industry.”
Well-funded US scooter players Bird and Lime have used their arsenals of venture capital funding to expand onto the continent.