Scooters And One Wheels

bounce layoffs: Electrical scooter maker Bounce fires 4% of its workforce

Electric scooter maker Bounce said on Friday it had let go about 4% of its workforce.

This is a new round of layoffs at the company after its shared mobility business took a hit soon after the Covid-19 outbreak in 2020, leading to multiple rounds of employee terminations in 2020 and 2021.

“We did go through an internal restructuring and had to let go of a few folks. Less than 4% to be precise,” a spokesperson for Bounce said.

It did not disclose the number of employees that have been fired. Before the pandemic, Bounce was only involved in the shared mobility business.

In FY21, the company’s business shrank by 83%, but just before the onset of Covid-19, the company was able to raise $105 million from Accel Partners and B Capital at a valuation of $520 million.

The proceeds helped the firm pivot to the manufacture of electric scooters in 2021 by acquiring 22 Motors for $7 million. The company launched its maiden vehicle Bounce Infinity in December 2021 and started delivering the scooters in mid-2022.

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The latest round of layoffs comes at a time when the company has yet to break into the EV makers’ top league. EV makers such as Ola Electric, TVS and Ather Energy have seen a surge in sales last year. Unlike Ola Electric and Ather Energy which use plug-in technology, Bounce makes vehicles with battery-swapping technology. These batteries can be removed from the vehicle and charged separately.

Before the pandemic, Bounce competed with the likes of Vogo and Yulu, but after the pandemic hit the mobility businesses hard, the company moved on to EVs, while Vogo was acquired by Mumbai-based Chalo in a distress sale.

Yulu continued its focus on the shared mobility business, catering to the food and grocery delivery workforce. In September, the company was able to raise $82 million (about Rs 653 crore) from investors led by Canada’s Magna to drive its expansion plan.

(Illustration by Rahul Awasthi)

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