Wednesday, March 3, 2010

India's First Bike-sharing Service - FreMo

India has its first bike-sharing service with FreMo, or Freedom to Move, in Thane, outside of Mumbai. FreMo was created by entrepreneur V. Ramesh to be a profitable business that successfully fights climate change. This service has six indoor "stations" and a fleet of 100 bikes. Subscribers get a smartcard upon registering and may also borrow a helmet before leaving a station.

Ramesh was first exposed to bike-sharing when visiting Barcelona where he saw Bicing. "The idea appealed to me so much that I quit my job in the financial sector and devoted the whole year to ground research for this project," said Ramesh to Hindustan Times.

Being a for-profit business, FreMo has a different pricing model than is commonplace with other services. FreMo offers multiple pricing plans to provide his customers options for varying needs of use. The one-time registration fee is 499 rupees ($11 USD), an annual membership fee of 199 rupees ($4.34 USD), and a variable usage fee based on the selected plan of 0.08 - 0.30 rupees (less than $0.01) per minute.

Here's a short video from CNN IBN:

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