Chinese bicycle sharing giant Ofo pulls out of Israel

Ofo  photo: Reuters, Edgar Su

The company, which operated in Ramat Gan, will donate its bicycles to charitable organizations.

Chinese bicycle sharing giant Ofo has decided to leave the Israeli market after conducting a pilot here, at first at Bar-Ilan University and then in Ramat Gan generally. A pilot scheme at the Weizmann Institute was halted earlier than planned.

Ofo Israel will donate some of its bicycles, in cooperation with the Ramat Gan municipality, to various organizations.

Ofo said it had decided to stop operating in Israel, as well as in other Middle Eastern countries, in order to focus on other regions of the world, the Xinhua news agency reported.

In fact, Israel is the only country in the Middle East region in which Ofo operates. Ofo has ceased operations in other cities as well, seeking to strengthen its position in major cities in which it has operated for several years, such as Paris, London and Milan. The abandonment of Israel is probably connected to the fact that Ofo was not able to operate in Tel Aviv, where the municipality has its own bicycle sharing scheme, Tel-O-Fun. A month ago, Ofo sold off its bicycles in Singapore.

Ofo was founded in 2014, and maintains some ten million bicycles in 250 cities around the world.

Meanwhile, a bicycle sharing venture has started in Netanya, run by IsraBike in collaboration with Chinese company YoBike.

Another Chinese bicycle sharing company, Mobike, continues to operate in Israel.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on July 9, 2018

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2018

Ofo  photo: Reuters, Edgar Su
Ofo photo: Reuters, Edgar Su
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