Rad Power Bikes, a popular American e-bike brand that raised over $300 million for the past two years, will begin offering bikes as a subscription service next week. The company partners with Cycle, a Berlin-based e-bike subscription service which serves couriers and last-mile delivery, for a pilot offering in Berlin.
Starting September 22, Cycle will provide two cargo bikes, the RadRunner and RadWagonfor rent with a starting price of €79.90 per month and a choice between an ongoing monthly rental or an annual contract, according to Cycle.
The partnership is Rad’s first subscription play — the company is hyper-focused on direct-to-consumer sales, but wants to attract a new segment of customers who prefer to pay to use an e-bike rather than own it outright, according to Arnaud Saladin, European business director of Rad.
“With this pilot, we want to understand the size of the demand and the exact value that these customers are looking for,” Saladin told TechCrunch. “This will help us determine what the optimal value offer is and the demand potential.”
Partnering with Rad to offer a consumer-focused subscription offering is also new for Cycle, formerly GetHenry. In its short life, the startup has primarily catered to the needs of last-mile suppliers and fleets. Cycle has its own developed cargo bike that is used by many of its fleet and courier customers, but in the spirit of variety and choice, Cycle has started to add Rad bikes to its range in 2020.
“Rad Power Bikes’ unique look has caught the eye of many people on the street,” Louis Orsini-Rosenberg, co-founder and CEO of Cycle, told TechCrunch. “Since we added the vehicles to our fleet, not a week has gone by that we haven’t received an email from private customers asking them to buy or lease them from us.”
Cycle has the on-site operations, bike maintenance and subscription infrastructure to operate in Berlin, so all Rad has to do is deliver the goods. Customers will be able to pick up their fully assembled e-bikes from Cycle’s workshop in Berlin’s trendy Kreuzberg district. Servicing is obviously included and repairs can be booked through the Cycle app. Paranoid customers can add a “peace of mind” package that would significantly reduce the excess in the event of massive damage or theft.