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Oybike Rolls into the Bike-Sharing Biz

Mary Catherine O'Connor | Friday December 4th, 2009 | 2 Comments

ban-startup-fridayoybike
As we’ve been reporting, some bike-sharing programs (well, okay, mostly the Velib system in Paris) have been navigating rough stretches of road, due to everything from vandalism to poor logistics to class distinctions. But that didn’t keep the curiously-named startup Oybike from introducing a bike rental system in the UK.

What makes its system unique is the price to hire a bike: zero dollars (pounds, to be precise). A couple of caveats: the free rentals are subsidized by adverts printed on placards that cover part of the frame, and the freeness lasts for 30 minutes—after that fees kick in, starting at £0.50 for the second half hour. Okay, a third caveat: it’s not really free because one must pay a registration fee online before even getting on the bike. These run from £5 for a week to £18 (roughly $30 USD) for a year. Oh, plus cell phone usage (more on that later). But still, it would make sense for frequent, short trips.

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  • adamgarrett

    Hi there,

    Thank you for writing such a positive article on OYBike. My name is Adam and I am the Operations Manager. There are however a couple of small mistakes in the article that I hope we can rectify:

    1) We are not a start-up and have been in operation for approx 5 years. We have run succesful schemes in London (Hammersmith and Fulham), Farnborough, Reading, Cheltenham, Reading and Cambridge…we were actually in operation before the Velib system but just didnt have the support of Councils :(

    It was a great relief when Velib started though as it helped to open the eyes of others that these schemes would work.

    2) The phone calls to hire a bike are compeltely free. We do not actually answer your phone but just use it to regocnise your number..all free. We can also provide a smart card that you can hire a bike with…more coming!

    Anwyay many thanks again for the great article and if you would like any more info please do not hesitate to contact me at adam@oybike.com.

    Regards,

    Adam

  • adamgarrett

    Hi there,

    Thank you for writing such a positive article on OYBike. My name is Adam and I am the Operations Manager. There are however a couple of small mistakes in the article that I hope we can rectify:

    1) We are not a start-up and have been in operation for approx 5 years. We have run succesful schemes in London (Hammersmith and Fulham), Farnborough, Reading, Cheltenham, Reading and Cambridge…we were actually in operation before the Velib system but just didnt have the support of Councils :(

    It was a great relief when Velib started though as it helped to open the eyes of others that these schemes would work.

    2) The phone calls to hire a bike are compeltely free. We do not actually answer your phone but just use it to regocnise your number..all free. We can also provide a smart card that you can hire a bike with…more coming!

    Anwyay many thanks again for the great article and if you would like any more info please do not hesitate to contact me at adam@oybike.com.

    Regards,

    Adam

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