Pan-European micro-mobility startup Voi achieves profitability in June, secures $30m funding
Voi Technology, the pan-European micro-mobility leader announced it has reached its first-ever monthly profit at group level for the month of June, less than two years since it launched the e-scooter service which now operates across 40 cities and 11 countries.
Voi revealed that in June 2020 it achieved a double-digit EBITDA margin, marking a strong return to Europe’s streets for the European electric micro-mobility provider after months of disruption due to the coronavirus pandemic. The margin was achieved on sales in June that were remarkably close to sales seen in June 2019, indicating that scooter riders are returning in number to this personal mode of travel that allows people to keep socially distant and avoid crowds.
Full-year figures for 2019 show that Voi’s revenues accelerated by almost fifty-fold during its first full year of operation, reaching SEK 317m. At the same time, Voi’s employee numbers rose from 31 at the end of 2018 to 409 at the end of 2019.
The rapid growth of the company has been supported by investments from committed shareholders, allowing Voi to launch successfully in all of Europe’s biggest e-scooter markets including Germany, France, Switzerland, Austria, Italy and Scandinavia. Following the last capital raise in November 2019, Voi focused firmly on strong unit economics and achieving operational excellence.
At the centre of its strategy was the decision to invest in the fourth generation proprietary scooter, Voiager V3X, designed in-house. The roll-out of the new scooter, with a swappable battery, has been game changing for the company, driving a more than 50% reduction in lower daily charging, logistics and repair costs per scooter. At the same time, the company increased its investments to become the most efficient micro mobility operator in the world through data driven analytics and machine learning capabilities. Another initiative saw the company launch a resale programme for refurbished scooters, facilitating the efficient recycling of capital in line with its sustainability targets. To date over 10,000 scooters have been sold.
Voi has also seen a paradigm shift in the operating environment. Following the Covid-19 lock-downs, the regulatory environment in many countries has improved significantly and decision makers are embracing new modes of transportation. Consumer behaviour is also changing, accelerating the use of multiple modes of transportation around cities.
On the back of Voi’s strong financial performance and renewed appetite from policymakers for new forms of transport to relieve capacity constraints on public transport, Voi’s main shareholders are supporting the company to invest further in these new opportunities, including the opening up of the UK market, potentially Europe’s biggest yet.
The company has signed a funding agreement with existing and new shareholders which will raise up to $30 million. VNV Global Ltd. led the round accompanied by more than 20 existing shareholders. In addition, a select number of new shareholders were also invited to participate.
The additional funds raised will be used to enable expansion into new markets, including the UK and to focus even further on efficiency enhancing initiatives. The company continues to target 2021 as its first full year of profitability.
Mathias Hermansson, CFO and Deputy CEO of Voi Technology said: “Coronavirus reset our industry to our long-term benefit and we are equipped to capitalize on the strong traction we see post-Covid-19. The incredible performance of our new e-scooter V3X has exceeded our expectations and we are now reaping the benefits of the structural improvements in unit economics that we have been working towards. The new generation scooters will make it possible to break-even at lower prices and lower utilization levels, paving the ground for the widespread adoption of e-scooters in Europe’s cities, on which we are entirely focused.”
“The performance this year bodes well for our launch in the UK where the Government has fast-tracked the launch of e-scooters in cities across the country, as a way of allowing socially distant travel. We expect to be awarded licenses in the next few weeks bringing micro-mobility to UK towns and cities for the first time and we are now strongly capitalized for this undertaking. We have seen huge interest from UK authorities in how Voi can work with them to launch this new form of low-carbon transport that replaces car use in urban areas.”
“It has been a tough first half to the year, but we are very happy to report the progress Voi has made so far after all the hard work put in by our colleagues to make Voi the most efficient fleet operator across Europe. Monthly profits is a huge milestone not only for us, but for the entire industry which has attracted much scepticism in the last year.”