The Dutch e-bike manufacturer VanMoof has received $ 128 million from financial investors. According to its own statements, this makes the company the best-financed company in the industry, which is already used to success.According to its own statements, the Dutch e-bike manufacturer VanMoof is now the best-funded company in the industry. The reason is high investments by financial investors. The financing round will be led by Hong Kong-based financier Hillhouse Capital, announced the start-up founded by the brothers Taco and Ties Carlier in 2009. With the fresh capital, the company wants to expand its production, develop new technologies and expand into 50 cities worldwide by the end of the current year.
E-bikes are booming
VanMoof is part of an extremely fast-growing industry. The corona crisis in particular has given the bicycle a boom. At the beginning of the pandemic, bicycle sales rose faster than since the oil crisis in the 1970s. Increasingly, buyers are turning to electric bicycles, which are exempt from compulsory insurance up to an electrically assisted top speed of 25 km / h.In Germany alone, sales of e-bikes rose by around nine percent to 1.2 million bikes in the first half of the year, according to the Zweirad-Industrie-Verband. This indicates another record year. While only 200,000 of the high-priced vehicles were sold in 2010, it was almost two million last year.
Fiercely competitive market
The market for bicycles with an additional electric motor is growing rapidly, but it is also highly competitive. On the one hand, there are classic bicycle manufacturers who offer both normal bicycles and e-bikes. On the other hand, there are specialized companies that only offer electric bicycles, such as VanMoof. This claims that they develop and manufacture over 80 percent of the components of their models themselves. The company’s models are not recognizable as e-bikes at first glance, as the battery is invisible in the frame of the bike. In addition, the company relies on extensive software control with the help of an app and an integrated theft protection system. The Belgian manufacturer Cowboy and, in particular, Ampler from Estonia is considered to be major competitors. Like VanMoof, they rely on direct sales of their bicycles.