A new report predicts that the global market for bike-sharing services will grow at a compound annual rate of 12.5% between 2018 and 2026.
The ‘Bike-Sharing Services Market’ research study, undertaken by Credence Research, examined the factors that could potentially fuel the growth of the global market for bike-sharing services, and found that the expansion that has been ongoing in recent years will continue and accelerate over the next eight years.
However, the report also warns that there are a number of challenges that service providers need to address to ensure that growth can be managed sustainable and cost effectively, and that services can provide the best possible service to riders around the world.
What is powering the growth of the bike-sharing market?
A primary factor contributing to growth is the growing number of government subsidies being offered to service providers, which can help to set up stations and expand the reach of bike-sharing schemes to greater numbers of users.
Further, this support for a wider rollout of bicycle-sharing facilities has extended to the regulatory environment, with local authorities pursuing the schemes for their potential to reduce carbon emissions, and thereby to contribute to global efforts to combat global warming.
What challenges are bike-sharing schemes facing?
Theft and vandalism of bicycles are the two biggest challenges, particularly for ‘dockless’ services, where bikes do not need to be deposited back in a station when riders are finished, but are instead collected up from wherever they are left and returned to stations by service providers.
These dockless bikes are vulnerable to vandalism and theft, with one provider abandoning its operations in Paris, Rome and Brussels after thousands of bikes were lost or stolen. Some scheme operators are exploring technological solutions, such as the installation of GPS trackers in bikes, and with many companies investing in making these initiatives more secure, these challenges are unlikely to affect the growth of the global market for bike-sharing services.