Neuron Mobility is looking to expand heavily in Australia, New Zealand and the U.K.
Singapore-based electric scooter rental operator Neuron Mobility has raised US$12 million in additional funding through a Series A+ round of investment, the company announced in a statement today.
The round was co-led by the company’s existing backers Australian tech-focused venture capital firm Square Peg and Silicon Valley-based early-stage investor GSR Ventures, the statement noted.
Neuron Mobility’s Series A+ round follows up on its $18.5 million Series A round that took place in December 2019, led by GSR Ventures. The latest funding brings Neuron Mobility’s total capital haul to $30.5 million, the statement noted.
The fresh funding will catalyze the e-scooter company’s international expansion and enable it to maintain a head start in innovation and safety leadership, according to the statement. Neuron Mobility is especially beefing up its expansion efforts in Australia and New Zealand.
“Our experience of operating in Australia and New Zealand, combined with fresh funding, will help us accelerate our growth across the region and beyond,” CEO of Neuron Mobility, Zachary Wang said in the statement.
Neuron Mobility plans extensive regional expansion
The 2016-founded company has secured partnerships across the two countries to commence operations in nine locations, including Adelaide, Brisbane, Darwin, and Auckland, the statement noted. The company also launched in Canberra and Townsville in the last two weeks, Wang noted in the statement.
Neuron Mobility is looking to further expand to five new cities within the region over the next 12 months, the statement noted. This is in addition to the launch of its e-scooter operations in Slough, England, the first of several U.K. locations that the company aims to launch in by the end of the year.
According to the statement, Neuron Mobility’s expansion efforts into Australia would lead to the creation of 400 jobs in the region and at its Singapore headquarters.
The startup currently operates 4,000 e-scooters, and its 400,000 riders in Australia and New Zealand have completed nearly two million trips and four million kilometers in city travel, the company said.
“Neuron’s DNA is innovation and collaboration. The company continues to create new technology solutions to address the transport challenges of individual cities, and they work closely with councils to implement them in a way that drives better outcomes for the public,” Partner at Square Peg, Tushar Roy noted in the statement.
“This approach has seen Neuron introduce a number of world-firsts, cementing them as an industry leader,” he continued.
Australia may be warming up to e-scooters
E-scooters are not approved in all areas of Australia, and trials are currently underway in several cities in which several players, including Neuron Mobility, are participating.
In October 2019, the National Transport Commission of Australia released a consultation paper on integrating personal mobility vehicles (which includes e-scooters) into Australia’s road regulations, and will be submitting its recommendations for ministerial approval in November this year.
With COVID-19, e-scooters became an environmentally sustainable and safe alternative to public transport. In Darwin, for instance, e-scooters saw a surge in demand as the city relaxed restrictions.
The company said in the statement that following Australia’s COVID-19 lockdown and imposition of social distancing rules, average e-scooter trip distance increased by 23% to 2.6km per rider, and the average duration of each trip rose by 10% to exceed 14 minutes.
“Cities across the world are rethinking their transport systems and increasingly people are looking for a safe, inexpensive and socially-distanced way to travel post COVID-19. This presents a great opportunity for micromobility providers,” Wang noted in the statement.
“Our approach has always been to partner with cities and to adapt to meet their needs–this has led to quite a few world firsts and innovations. We strive to lead the industry when it comes to safety and sustainable operations–we’ve a whole host of exciting new features in the pipeline that we’ll be rolling out soon,” he also said.
Neuron Mobility’s e-scooters are focused on renting and rider safety, the statement noted. Current features include geofencing, which gives local Australian councils better control on speed and permissible locations for e-scooters, interchangeable batteries for sustainable operations, voice guidance to improve safety, and an app-controlled helmet lock.
Other features include topple detection, which alerts the company’s operations team if an e-scooter topples over, an emergency button for accidents, and a “Follow my Ride” feature for real-time tracking of e-scooter trips.
Header image courtesy of Neuron Mobility