ShareBikeSG is the latest bike-sharing operator to bow out of the Singapore market.
SINGAPORE — ShareBikeSG is bowing out of the Singapore market just half a year after it began operations, becoming the third bicycle-sharing operator to bite the dust in the past month ahead of a strict new licensing regime.
GBikes and oBike, which is embroiled in controversy over hefty fines and millions of dollars in deposits owed to users, announced last month that they were stopping services here.
Speaking to TODAY on Tuesday (July 3), ShareBikeSG's founder Ethan Tan, 31, said the operator stopped offering its dockless bicycle-sharing service last month.
It started the service in December last year and had a fleet of about 300 mountain bicycles, which were deployed in areas such as Gardens by the Bay, East Coast Park, Pasir Ris and Punggol.
Its mobile application, however, remains operational for users seeking refunds.
On its exit, Mr Tan said the requirements under a new licensing regime to tackle indiscriminate parking were "quite difficult" to meet. He also pointed to the hefty fines that the authorities impose on operators for failing to clear their bicycles within a designated timeframe.
"I'm not sure this kind of rules that come out will settle the problem of people (indiscriminately) parking their bicycles," he said, adding that users should be educated.
New laws passed in March require operators offering dockless shared bicycles, personal mobility devices and power-assisted bicycles to be regulated under the new licensing scheme, which will kick in from July 7.
Under the two-year licence, operators will have to take steps to ensure that users practise responsible parking, including requiring commuters to scan a unique QR (quick-response) code at the parking spot as proof of proper parking before they can end their trip. They will also have to continuously charge users who park indiscriminately until they return their bicycles to a designated parking space.