Bike subscription service receives £16.75M in new investment

Kid’s bike subscription service, Bike Club, gears up for national and European expansion after closing £16.75M in new investment.

Bike Club, which is chaired by Mike Balfour OBE – Founder of Fitness First – has now received this cash injection as part of a Series B funding round.

Leading the investment is Circularity Capital, a private equity firm specialising in circular economy businesses – which challenges the “take-make-dispose” approach to production and consumption, encouraging the elimination of waste instead, along with existing investor Codex Capital.

Raising £13.25M to date, the bike subscription success story, solving the pain of having to buy children new, quality bikes every 12-18 months as they grow, has ambitions to pedal into Germany and France within the next 12 to 24 months.

Founded in 2016 by James Symes and Alexandra Rico-Lloyd, Bike Club is revolutionising the cycle industry by offering families the chance to subscribe to new or refurbished bikes and scooters online and then exchange them as their child grows.

Outgrowing the fleets of Lime, Uber and Santander Cycles, the easy-to-manage monthly subscription program — costing between £4.49 to £15.99 per month — currently has a network of 40,000 quality bikes and, with the new investment, puts it on track to climb to 220,000 over the next three years. Subscribers are now set to more than double to 80,000 in the next year.

Bike Club founder and father of three, James, was previously a Special Advisor to the Chairman of KPMG said: “The pandemic, together with the growing trend for health and wellbeing, has spurred a significant uptick in family cycling and demand continues to be at its highest level in decades. Bike Club is on a mission to disrupt family cycling meaning you never need to buy a kids bike again. We’ve seen traction across the country with different families using us to get outdoors and enjoy a healthier more active lifestyle.”

Approximately 900,000 children’s bikes are sold annually in the UK with a €4.3bn (£3.6bn) opportunity in Europe. The on-the-go cycling subscription service is on track to deliver £5.8m of revenue this year rising to £11m next year with a current company valuation of £45/$57m//€53m. Bike Club’s fastest growing category is First Pedal (age 3–6 yrs) with a 76% increase in 2021 v 2020.

Customers can choose from a selection of well-known, quality bike brands including Frog, Forme, Strider, Woom, Puky, Squish and Isla.

David Mowat, Partner of Circularity Capital, said: “As society faces climate change, we should work together to consume better, meaning we should rent better things and refurbish them. This is exactly the option Bike Club gives tens of thousands of families across the UK.

Bike Club’s circular economy means less bikes need to be produced each year. Each of their bikes is saving 336kg CO2 versus an owned bike. So far, their fleet has saved 1,174 tonnes of CO2 versus ownership”