Voi, the Stockholm-based micro-mobility company, known for its e-scooter rentals, launched the $3 million (approx £2.2 million) City Innovation Fund to expand parking, improve safety, and advance the sustainability of micro-mobility vehicles and operations.
The first investments come from Oonee, a company offering modular and secure public parking solutions for e-scooters and bikes, MaasLab at University College London, and Nortical, a software company that collects and analyses battery usage.
How will the funding be used?
The funding will be used to expand parking options that reduce pavement clutter to ensure cities remain accessible; road safety innovations focusing on novel approaches to infrastructure, rider education, and vehicle technology; and projects that improve the sustainability of operations, including support for research and advocacy.
Planning to add external funding sources
The Swedish company is planning to add external funding sources on top of Voi’s resources to the cause and will continually announce and showcase further collaborations and projects as they materialise.
Shabazz Stuart, CEO, and Co-Founder of Oonee says: “Bicycles and scooters are a rapidly growing component of New York’s transportation landscape. The lack of free, secure parking infrastructure is a problem that disproportionately affects essential workers and the less affluent. For over two years, Oonee has fought to bring this much-needed service to our community’s streets, with well-designed, centrally located parking stations available 24/7. As the city prepares to launch a shared e-scooter program, we must invest in the infrastructure that this new mode of transport requires. Our partnership with Voi will help us reach that goal.”
Dr. Manos (Emmanouil) Chaniotakis, Lecturer at MaaSLab UCL, says: “E-scooters and other light electric vehicles can help close the first/last mile gap, and can be key to a future of mobility as a service (MaaS). This collaboration will allow us to better understand the transportation system and travel behaviour to make progress toward net-zero-carbon, multimodal transport.”
Kristoffer Syveren, CTO and Co-Founder of Nortical, says: “We have had the pleasure of having Voi as a development partner from our very early days. This pilot allows us to apply our next-gen battery management system. We are excited to support Voi and the shift in urban mobility towards micro-mobility, but also the shift to improved battery utilisation and responsibility.”
Fredrik Hjelm, Voi’s CEO and Co-Founder says: “Since its inception, Voi has been committed to creating cities for people — that means cities that are accessible, easy to navigate, and free of noise and pollution. Our new City Innovation Fund will allow Voi to continue to invest in projects and research that improve micro-mobility access for all. We’re thrilled to launch our Fund by working with Oonee, MaaSLab, and Nortical to make micro-mobility the preferred transport option in Voi cities and beyond.”
Raised £291.3 million
A couple of weeks back, Voi raised $160 million (approx £119 million) funding led by The Raine Group, bringing the total to £291.3 million.
Founded in 2018, VOI Technology owns, operates, and manages electric scooters for urban commuters. Since its first launch in September, Voi has grown to six cities across the UK and delivered close to 250,000 safe rides with a combined total distance of 300,000 miles travelled, replacing on average 14% of the car trips. Right now, Voi is active in markets including Northampton, Birmingham, Liverpool, Cambridge, Bath, and Bristol.