An iconic American automaker just made a serious acquisition in the e-scooter space. Recent reports suggest Ford bought e-scooter company Spin for an estimated $100 million.
Founded in 2016, Spin is a San Francisco-based company that currently offers dockless e-scooters in nine American cities and five college campuses. As of this May, the company was valued just under $45 million and reportedly refused to be sold to other big-name companies.
Spin will formally be a part of the carmaker’s Ford X division. Ford X was recently created mainly to help Ford’s research and development efforts examining eco-friendly transportation for the modern world.
One of Ford X’s stated goals is to produce a line of self-driving e-cars by 2021. With this new Spin acquisition, however, it’s apparent Ford is also trying to branch out into the popular ride-sharing space.
This isn’t the first time that Ford dipped its toes into the e-scooter space. Just this year Ford executives worked with scientists at Purdue University on their unique brand of e-scooters called Jelly.
Ford is also already involved in the popular e-bike sharing space with its GoBikes. Launched in 2017 with the help of Motivate, hundreds of GoBikes are now available all around the Bay Area.
As a result of Ford’s acquisition, residents of Detroit will now have even easier access to e-scooters. Indeed, shortly after Ford announced its purchase of Spin, approximately 400 Spin scooters were released into downtown Detroit.
Spin is, however, expected to face some pretty intense competition on the Motor City’s streets. E-scooter giants Lime and Bird have already been operating in Detroit since the summer of 2018.
Rumor is that Uber is also seeking to make an acquisition as well and possibly eyeing Lime or Bird or both, just as scooters are arriving in Tampa and many other cities in early 2019.
People who want to use a Spin e-scooter must download the company’s app onto their Apple or Android device. Once you unlock a Spin e-scooter, you’ll be charged $1 and an additional 15 cents for every minute of ride-time.
For more information on Spin, or to download the app onto your phone, please visit the company’s official website at https://www.spin.app/.