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00:00:00
>> Shit.>> Scooter sharing across America is growing fast enough to spark a wave of new, well-funded startups. But it's not just the new app-based operators that are riding the wave.>> I'm Reuter's Jane Lanhee Lee, on Venice Beach, where these shared scooters by market leaders Bird and Lime seem to be everywhere.
00:00:19
And one company is providing the bulk of all of these scooters in America. They're called Segway Ninebot. The Beijing-based company was formed in 2015 when a Chinese company bought Segway, the American company that made these two-wheelers that became a punch line and a mini-craze at the same time in the early 2000's.
00:00:38
Even getting a co-starring role in the Hollywood comedy Mall Cop. We caught up with CEO Gao Lufeng, who was in LA for a product launch event, and he told us about how he broke into the market.>>
FOREIGN]
Even if a competitor copies your scooter. By the time their scooters enter the market, we'll have a new scooter that's even better for the leasing market, a more intelligent product.
00:00:59
>> Less than a year after it launched, Bird is already valued at $2 billion. Segway Ninebot, which supplies all of the Bird's scooters, itself was already valued at over $1.5 billion last year before the scooter craze. And is now raising another $200 million. So even with looming regulatory challenges in many cities, others want in.
00:01:23
Razor which makes scooters popular among American kids is launching its scooter sharing business this summer. And startups like Clever Mobility, a portfolio company of the LA Cleantech Innovation Center, are popping up, offering what it says is a scooter with swappable batteries and better GPS for tracking. Segway Ninebot isn't worried.
00:01:42
The company has more than 200 people developing and improving its products, and its mass scale production means it's competitive.>>
00:02:00
So I don't think anyone can compete with us.