Some back of the envelope costs indicate that the payback period on scooters is a bit over a month, after which they earn about $11 per day per scooter. See this analysis by Quartz and this independent analysis.
Lime recently indicated their latest scooters have an average lifespan of 4 months. So if the payback period is a month, that’s 3 months of profitable operation per scooter.
The same Quartz article above pegged the price of a scooter at $320, the revenue per scooter at $16 per day and the cost of recharge at $5 per day. Over the 4 month lifespan of each scooter, that’s $1,920 in revenue and $920 in cost which makes for $1,000 in profit and a healthy return on the upfront cost.
Additionally, we may see unit economics improve over time as these vehicles get redesigned to be more rugged and efficient, providing a longer lifespan and more operational efficiency in terms of charging, maintenance and rebalancing.
First of all, the four-month lifespan could be spin. It’s previously been established that the eScooters made for individuals drop dead within a month when used in fleets. As the companies transition to custom-built eScooters designed for strength, their lifespan might reach four months. Such eScooters will also cost more.
The one thing those closest to the everyday fleet are learning is how brutal and uncaring the general public can be towards their property. The YouTube videos I’ve seen! They disgust me. Those at the top of the corporate pyramid only see statistics, not the granular reality.
Having again called the future, I haven’t yet tuned into The Next Thing. When I do, I hope this time I’ll be able to get a damn taste of the money! Being prophetic doesn’t pay without having skin in the game.