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PBSC is thrilled to have participated in the Autonomy Mobility 2024 event, a premier global gathering focused on sustainable urban mobility solutions. This two-day event hosted in the vibrant city of Paris, attracted over 400 speakers and 5,000 participants, fostering a unique space for industry experts to share insights and innovations. With a commitment to "decarbonizing mobility", the event served as an ideal platform for PBSC to connect with European partners from France, Spain, and beyond, exchanging valuable perspectives on advancing eco-friendly transportation.

As a leader in the micromobility space, we engaged in a panel discussion featuring Anthony Rinaldi, PBSC’s Urban Solutions Expert, alongside esteemed partners Carlos Mateo, Mobility Director at EMT Madrid and Marina Llobregat Vilar, Operations Manager at Serveo Barcelona. Moderated by Harry Maxwell from Fluctuo, the panel delved into the topic "Why bike sharing is up 20% in Europe", highlighting the growing adoption of bike sharing as a sustainable, efficient mode of urban transport. 

Let’s dive into the key takeaways of this insightful panel discussion. 

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Bike-sharing growth in Europe 

The European Shared Mobility Annual Review, offers a comprehensive look at the micromobility landscape across the continent in 2023. Released during the Autonomy event, Fluctuo's report opened the discussion on the evolution of bike-sharing in Europe. Committed to fostering knowledge and innovation in the industry, PBSC proudly sponsored this 2023 review. 

The report revealed that the European shared mobility sector reached 930,000 vehicles last year, a 7% year-over-year growth, and more than 600 million trips have been made on shared micromobility vehicles this same year (+10% increase year-over-year). One of the most striking observations is the strong resurgence of bike-sharing in 2023, with a significant growth, contrasting with the previous dominance of shared scooters from 2018 to 2022. 

Station-based bikes made a significant impact, with 186,000 shared bikes navigating Europe's roads in 2023, a 9% increase from the previous year. Moreover, these bikes facilitated over 192 million journeys, demonstrating a 13% rise from 2022. 

How can we explain this renewed trend towards bike-sharing? 

Bike-sharing as a contribution to citizens' well-being 

According to our panelists, cities are nowadays more conscious and educated about sustainability, innovation, and citizens’ well-being, driven by concerns such as air quality and a desire to reduce car usage and noise pollution. This has driven cities and decision-makers to further develop bike-friendly infrastructures, encouraging cycling. Cities are increasingly using bike-sharing as a complement to public transportation, emphasizing the role of bikes in enhancing urban mobility networks. Bike-share works in harmony with public transport as it is often used as a first- and last-mile option. As more and more reliable bike sharing solutions emerge in the market, cities are more confident about adopting them. 

“Adopting a bike-share solution is also a way of regaining freedom as one of the primary sources of freedom is autonomy” declared Anthony Rinaldi. 

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From the user's standpoint, as an active mode of transport, bike-share promotes well-being and health, and aligns with the growing environmental consciousness among citizens. Economically, bike-sharing presents a more affordable alternative to other transportation options, further encouraging its utilization. 

These user-centric benefits, combined with city-led initiatives, highlight the surge in bike-sharing's popularity, reflecting a broader movement towards sustainable and user-friendly urban transportation solutions.

A trend towards electrification 

The bike-sharing boom has given rise to some striking market trends. With a growing demand for e-bikes in mixed fleets, our panelists clearly underline the trend toward electrification. As more and more cities introduce e-bikes into their fleets, these bikes are also generating significantly more trips. For instance, in Detroit, MoGo’s electric bikes see three times more usage than mechanical bikes. In Montreal, BIXI's e-bikes, which make up 25% of the fleet, are used 30% more frequently than mechanical bikes. Barcelona's Bicing reports that 72.1% of the system’s trips are made on e-bikes. To meet this high demand, Bicing has also announced plans to make its fleet fully electric over the next few years. 

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Addressing the infrastructure to support this electrification, the integration of charging stations is crucial. These stations ensure e-bikes are always ready and accessible, enhancing user convenience and system efficiency. It also removes the need for battery swap, optimizing both time and resource utilization for operators. Our smart charging stations are the perfect example. Indeed, PBSC’s innovative solution enables to dock and secure bikes while automatically and quickly charging the electric fleet. 

PBSC is happy to have participated in the 8th edition of Autonomy Mobility, fostering collaboration and insight sharing, furthering the collective goal of creating more livable, eco-friendly urban environments. Looking ahead, PBSC is excited to continue contributing to the evolution of micromobility, leveraging insights from tradeshows like Autonomy.

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