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Meet Joos, ‘Santander bikes of smartphone batteries’ offering mobile power bank rental across the UK

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While much of the country stayed at home during the most recent lockdown, Joos have been out and about expanding their network of mobile power banks ready for when the world, and their phones, are out again. Joos’ revenue comes from power bank rental, available from stations the company installs and maintains for free in venues like bars, shopping centres, and transport hubs. Research has shown that venues with charging options will see revenue increase as customers with fuller batteries will stay longer and spend more.

Joos was started by three school friends from (Hann Zhao Liu) Singapore, (Peter Hu) China, and (Joshua Baah) Ghana. After observing how widespread power bank rental was in Asia, they delivered the model to the UK, where existing charging solutions usually meant leaving a phone in a locked cabinet. Working on a similar model to the Santander bike hire in London—a Joos charger can be rented from one location and dropped off at another.

Apple’s MFi approval

While other companies have started to bring a similar model to the UK, they have all adopted a white-label model, taking power banks designed and used in Asian markets and rebranding them. Joos previously distributed a white-label solution under the brand name ChargeBolt, but soon realised that having a vertically integrated model — where they have control of the design, manufacture, and distribution — offered them significant advantages, allowing them to deliver the concept to the United Kingdom without being stuck with products and models designed for a different market....

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