WHY THE UNBREAKABLE MODEL FROM E-BIKE TO GO WILL BEAT THE CAR
Four years ago, Jelle Visser – the founder of e-bike to go – took the first steps to realise his mission: to bring an unbreakable e-bike made for intensive use on to the market. By developing a bicycle-sharing platform for the B2B market and offering a private e-bike subscription for individuals, he was able to transform e-bike to go from a start-up to a market leader in a short period. Here Jelle reflects on the journey so far.
Why did you start e-bike to go?
“Before starting e-bike to go I worked for a major German bicycle manufacturer for many years. Being able to experience so much in the bicycle industry before making this step has been really valuable. I think it’s essential to know your product and the market in which you operate thoroughly before you launch your brand.”
“The idea for e-bike to go originated in a series of observations. The bicycle industry is quite old-fashioned, which made me think ‘hey, we can do this better.’ I also saw a clear shift in the image of the e-bike as a product. Whereas it used to be especially popular among the elderly a few years ago, we are seeing more and more young people choosing e-bikes over cars, public transport or standard bicycles.”
“I saw a clear shift in the image of the e-bike”
What is e-bike to go’s added value as a company?
“We do what we promise. We have an excellent product and provide transparant and clear service. There is no hidden fine print. I think this is the only way to grow in the current market. The average consumer is more demanding than ever – and rightly so. That is why we keep our promises and put our customers first. And our e-bikes have been designed to provide that added value. They are unbreakable.”
What makes an e-bike to go unbreakable?
“Every component is well thought through with a clear goal in mind: to make an e-bike which looks great and can practically not be broken. This is why we opted for anti-puncture tyres, for instance, which can endure a lot more than standard ones. The welding of the frame is extra strong so it cannot crack. The mudguards are made of extra-thick aluminium (3 mm) instead of plastic. And the rods of the fenders are heavier. These design choices ensure that your e-bike won’t start squeaking the moment you bumb into something.”
“We didn’t look for the cheapest solutions: our focus has been on endurance and sustainability”
How do you see the future of e-bike to go?
“I expect us to be a dominant player not only in the Netherlands but also in neighbouring countries within five years. We are seeing more and more places promoting sustainable mobility solutions. Politicians are making a major contribution by constructing infrastructure or discouraging the use of cars. Once you’re supported by politics, you can play a major role as an e-bike brand if you have a good product. Ultimately, this is a super healthy way to travel and a serious potential contender for solving many of the problems that plague our society today – such as health issues, space shortages in cities and poor air quality. I’m convinced that, in the long term, we will beat cars in every major city.”