Beam Soon to Launch Electric Bike and Scooter Rental Service in Indonesia
Startup developer of micro-mobility services “Beam” announced its plans to enter the Indonesian market. The move comes after the company secured a $93 million Series B funding led by Affirma Capital. A number of other venture capitalists took part in this funding, including Sequoia Capital India and AC Ventures.
Besides Indonesia, the expansion will also include several other countries, namely the Philippines, Vietnam, Japan, and Turkey. It is known that Beam is currently available in Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand, South Korea, Thailand and Taiwan.
The Beam service itself allows users to rent urban mobility services, consisting of two options. First there is the Beam Saturn, which is an electric scooter designed to be easy and safe to drive.
Then the second Beam Apollo, which is in the form of a modern electric bicycle. And coming soon Beam Jupiter for e-moped devices.
The startup was founded by Alan Jiang (CEO) and Deb Gangopadhyay (CTO). Alan previously served as Country Manager for Uber Indonesia, then became Head of SEA for a service similar to Beam from Beijing, namely Ofo.
Micro Mobility Services in Indonesia
Previously, GrabWheels had paved the way in Indonesia to provide electric scooter services at several points. In its initial presence, Grab collaborated with property development partners such as Sinar Mas Land for trials in BSD City, as well as universities in Jakarta.
However, not long after, the service was discontinued due to several cases, including accidents. According to an urban planning observer who did not want to be identified, to provide micro-mobility services in Indonesia there are many challenges, especially if the target is in open public areas.
According to him, such business concepts are more suitable to be placed in special locations, such as housing complexes or tourist attractions — usually requiring collaboration with local partners such as property developers or the government.
Grab has actually implemented this strategy, but has received good acceptance from the market. By regulation, in Indonesia there is already a Regulation of the Minister of Transportation Number 45 of 2020 concerning Certain Vehicles Using Electric Motors.
The regulation was issued in mid-June 2020, shortly after the Grab electric scooter was introduced. In a country with good urban planning such as the United States, this micro-mobility service model has received quite good acceptance from the community.
According to McKinsey research in 2019, it is estimated that the micro-mobility industry could be worth around $300-500 billion by 2030. But since the pandemic hit, the use of micro-mobility including electric scooters has fallen by 50%-60%.
In Singapore, on-demand services for electric scooters and bicycles were also popular, until a number of cases occurred and prompted local regulators to impose restrictions.
For example, there are penalties for users who park their scooters or bicycles in public places irregularly or inappropriately; until a number of rules are tightened related to mobility devices to reduce the potential for accidents.
Beam admits that it continues to innovate on user safety technology. One of them is by implementing MARS (Micromobility Augmented Riding Safety) which consists of safety innovations to protect pedestrians, regulate zoning and parking spaces, to encourage the use of safer vehicles by users.
Innovations in terms of mobility devices also continue to be tightened. Micromobility has taken cutting-edge safety systems such as MARS Beam technology and applied them to small electric vehicles such as e-scooters, e-bikes and e-mopeds to help cities flow better for everyone.
Beam Co-Founder & CEO Alan Jiang said, ” We are excited to partner with a visionary fund like Affirma to bring lower cost, greener and safer mobility to cities across APAC.”
Regarding the pandemic, Beam believes the demand for micro-mobility services will continue to grow in Asia Pacific. This early is reflected in Beam’s revenue which has grown 15 times since the start of the pandemic.
Beam is working with local governments in cities across Asia Pacific to provide safe and sustainable shared micromobility services when their communities are interested in cleaner and more sustainable ways of traveling.