Toby Sun, Co-Founder of Lime, is at the forefront of a multi-billion-dollar urban mobility industry that has capitalised on the digital revolution of traditional forms of transportation. Lime was set up in 2017 as an app-managed dockless bike-sharing initiative, and is now valued at $2bn, offering speedy e-scooters and bikes in more than 100 cities across five continents.
Sun comes from a venture capital background, having spent three years as Investment DIrector of Fosun Kinzon Capital. He decided to launch a dockless mobility product after studying dock-based bikesharing, which he noticed cost cities million of dollars to implement. Lime co-founder Caen Contee told Forbes that the company’s innovation was in being able to take away costs for docks, kiosks and fobs, thereby removing economic barriers and opening up the market to smaller areas and cities.
The app-based method for finding and ‘unlocking’ bikes and scooters owes a lot to systems implemented for the cab industry by Uber, which became so enamoured by the bike and scooter sharing market that it has decided to launch its own offering. Sun told Business Insider that he welcomed the competition “because it’s how we get better”.
Although there are questions about the potential for sustained growth in the e-scooter market, with some cities introducing bans on their use in heavily congested areas, Lime continues to grow. Recent reports finding the company has racked up 50 million trips in just 18 months of operations, and its electric scooters last month launched in Bogotá and Montevideo, serving a combined population of almost 10 million residents.
Sun also told Business Insider that he was confident systems would be put in place to accommodate the scooters. “In the past, most of the infrastructure was not built properly for bikes and scooters. Now we’re creating a platform for accelerating this process.
“I’m just very excited that Lime is part of the driving force to accelerate the urban mobility revolution.”
In May 2019, Lime announced that Sun, formerly the company’s CEO, would refocus his attention on company culture and R&D. Co-Founder Brad Bao, who spent time as a Tencent executive, became CEO.Tags: transport