We are moving towards sustainable mobility because of rising supplies costs and increased environmental awareness. We have been used for years to subscribe to podcasts and series. Subscriptions to electric bikes are now possible. Renting urban bikes is a more convenient and comfortable option. Wifly, a Madrid company that revolutionizes this sector, is taking part in Alhambra Venture this season.
It was impossible to imagine that this idea could have been born without two wheels. Marcos Benatar (Business Angel) and Jaime Sacristan (CEO), were the founders of the project. They had been brainstorming to find a business opportunity that would add value to society. Micromobility was one of the most attractive markets, but the partners realized that renting was not an option for daily use.
Jaime Sacristan says, "My commute to work back then was my time for recreation, creativity, and when I got home from work, the closest bike stop was full. I decided to take a longer route and pay another monthly fee. I thought, I wish I could have a bike for me. He and his partner devised a flexible, long-term rental model that would not only solve the problem for urban cyclists but also avoid the costs of the bike being stolen or vandalized. He recalls, "We saw it very clearly" and launched the business model to prove its viability. This was how Wifly, along with Carlos Aguado (director of operations), was created.
This company offers a subscription service for electric bikes. The user pays a monthly fee and gets an electric bike as if they were their own. The founders of Wifly claim that electric bikes will soon be affordable and accessible to everyone. Wifly allows users to share their bikes and decide that they prefer e-bikes. The subscription also allows the customer to purchase an electric bike at any moment.
Although they were aware that the market was expanding rapidly, there wasn't a specialist in Spain for the product and users had little information or purchase security. They believe the subscription is the best way to meet mobility needs and at an affordable price. They are competitive against standard bikes and provide an intermediary step to purchasing an ebike from any brand.
The idea behind the project was to create more beautiful cities for its residents. It is targeted at all people with mobility needs. However, the primary focus is on those between 30 and 50. There have been many phases to the startup. They started as a consumer service but were unable to attract investors because of a South European business model that was not yet established. The fleet was then rented to riders by quick commerce companies. They have clients like Gorillas and Getir. They are now developing a prototype bike for the market and want to make it available to the public.
They see 2023 as the year when the Wifly brand will be more prominently seen in Spain. They say that they want to see a strong expansion, and if it succeeds, replicate it in other countries like France, Italy and Portugal. They expect much from Alhambra Venture participation. We were excited to hear the news, as we had heard of the program and that it has many names. They recall that they came from an acceleration program with a more American perspective and wanted a local perspective on capital markets and legal issues. Alhambra Venture brings together great startups and investors. We have the privilege of being able to access that network for networking, so we are hopeful that interesting collaborations will be possible.