August 16, 2022 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Bird Seeking 1/4 Billion From Investors After Losing $100 Million

Scooter giant seeking venture capital after posting losses in first quarter 

By Sam Catanzaro 

Bird Inc, the Santa Monica-based company behind Bird scooters, reported significant financial losses during the first quarter of the year. Despite this decline in revenue, the company, valued at being worth about $3.2 billion, continues to seek out venture capital investments aggressively by touting their new devices’ durability. 

As reported by The Information, Bird lost nearly $100 million in the first quarter of 2019 while revenue declined by over 62 percent from the previous quarter. In addition, in the spring the company said they were down to around $100 million in cash despite raising over $700 million over nearly two years. In response to this loss of revenue, the company laid off five percent of its employees and paused service in 44 of its North American markets.

Despite these losses, the company projects robust growth and hopes to break even during the summer months thanks to their new scooters: the Bird One and the Bird Zero. These devices, which make up around 80 percent of the fleet, according to CEO Travis VanderZanden, are heavier and more durable than previous models which Bird hopes will woo investors.

“In 2018, we introduced the industry’s first scooter designed and engineered specifically for the sharing market, Bird Zero. Resulting from the commercial-grade aspects of Bird Zero, it lasts over 10 months in the sharing environment on average and is now profitable due to its increased lifespan and battery capacity,” VanderZanden said. “Bird One builds on the benefits and learnings of Bird Zero and is forecasted to last in the sharing environment for well over a year.” 

Per The Information, Bird wants to raise $200-300 million in venture capital by the end of summer. As part of the pitch to investors, Bird touted stats relating to the new scooters’ durability as a way the company hopes to cut down on operating costs. Bird is also looking to raise funds by selling a $1,299 device for personal use and allowing companies to rent out their devices for a cut of revenue. 

Information presented to investors provides insight into Bird’s revenue and operating costs. Looking at Bird One and Bird Zero usage data in two four-week periods from this spring and summer — May 6 to June 2 and June 10 to July 7 — the company made the case that they have become more efficient despite the loss of $100 million in the first quarter of 2019. 

During this period, gross revenue per ride ranged from $4.12 to $4.27, an over 10 percent increase from last year’s numbers, according to data reported by The Information. This increase in revenue is possibly due to the company’s hikes on ride rates from 15 cents a minute to 30 cents a minute in many cities. In Santa Monica, the current rate is 26 cents a minute. 

In addition, The Information touched on the depreciation of Bird devices to the tune of between $0.94 to $1.17 per ride during the study period, roughly a quarter of each ride’s revenue. The decline in scooters’ value is Bird’s most significant cost per ride and something the company addressed in the rollout of the Bird One by touting the durability of the device. 

When it came to insurance, The Information says that Bird is paying around 25 cents per ride, but this figure could go up as larger claims emerge down the line. For charging, Bird is paying between 79 cents and 93 cents per ride, a nearly 40 percent decrease from last year. Finally, repairs are costing Bird between 32 and 44 cents per ride, down from last year. In the spring, the company stopped outsourcing repairs and began hiring mechanics working out of service centers to lower costs. 

When reached for comment, Bird said “we don’t comment on rumors or speculation,” while referring a series of VanderZanden’s tweets regarding The Information’s article in which he called the piece “(fake) news.” 

“I’m on a flight back from a Paris business trip and catching up on some (fake) news about Bird’s financials. Here are some facts so you can decide how Bird’s business is doing for yourself,” VanderZanden wrote. “Bird’s revenue run rate is up over 4x from this time last year. Bird is now making $1.27 on every ride on the Bird Zero scooters, which is over 75% of our fleet. Yes, this includes charging, repair, all other local ops, and the cost of the vehicle (depreciation). In fact, our unit economics are already better than ride-sharing and we’ve only been operating a little over 1.5 years.” 

“We sent this data to the reporter (DisInformation) that triggered this “news” cycle, but he chose to use old data from last winter. The $100M he ref was a one-time accounting write-off from old retail scooters b/c our original depreciation window was too long. Facts matter.” 

in News
Related Posts

Man Arrested for Santa Monica’s Second Homicide of the Year

August 15, 2022

August 15, 2022

Lamont E. Horton arrested in connection to August 11 murder By Sam Catanzaro A man was arrested by Santa Monica...

Sunset Park Custom Home Lists For First Time Ever By Original Builders $5.9M: Santa Monica Real Estate Report – August 15th, 2022

August 15, 2022

August 15, 2022

Property, Developments, and Listings on the Westside.* City Council Votes to Unanimously Backs Proposal to Cut Rent Increases* Sunset Park...

Construction Begins on Michigan Avenue Affordable Housing Development

August 13, 2022

August 13, 2022

The new development will replace the Santa Monica Nikkei Hall By Dolores Quintana ​​A new affordable housing project has begun...

Column: Time to Crack Down on Vacant Homes’ Owners

August 12, 2022

August 12, 2022

By Tom Elias, Columnist ​​There is no doubt California has a housing shortage. That’s fact even in the wake of...

Metro To Hold Community Meetings About Potential Green Line Extension

August 12, 2022

August 12, 2022

By Dolores Quintana Los Angeles Metro is holding a series of public meetings to discuss extending the Metro C or...

Another Mountain Lion Dies After Being Hit by a Car

August 12, 2022

August 12, 2022

P-89 found dead along the shoulder of the 101 Freeway in Woodland Hills last month By Sam Catanzaro Another mountain...

Santa Monica Police Arrest Sexual Assualt Suspect

August 12, 2022

August 12, 2022

Anthony Barrett arrested in connection to June 28 assault By Sam Catanzaro Santa Monica police are seeking the public’s help...

LA City Council Approves Expanded Anti-Camping Ordinance

August 11, 2022

August 11, 2022

Bonin one of three not votes in expansion of LAMC section 41.18 Los Angeles City Council has banned homeless encampments...

Review: A Santa Monica Restaurant’s New Happy Hour is Top-Notch

August 10, 2022

August 10, 2022

By Dolores Quintana Birdie G’s in Santa Monica has a new Happy Hour and it is something special. For one...

Italian Market Coming to Montana Avenue

August 10, 2022

August 10, 2022

Sogno Toscano planned for 1512 Montana Avenue By Dolores Quintana Sogno Toscano is aiming to open a new “lifestyle cafe,...

Best of Santa Monica Awards Voting Now Open!

August 10, 2022

August 10, 2022

Cast your vote to support your favorite local businesses  Voting is now open for the Santa Monica Mirror’s annual Best...

Venice Family Clinic to Provide Free Community Resources in Celebration of National Health Center Week

August 9, 2022

August 9, 2022

Nonprofit Community Health Center Offering Free COVID-19 Vaccines, Children’s Books, HIV Testing, Health Insurance Counseling, CalFresh Enrollment and More August...

Santa Monica Obtains Injunctions Against Landlords in Section 8 Voucher Discrimination Lawsuit

August 8, 2022

August 8, 2022

Judgment requires landlords to accept voucher, pay $20,000 in restitution  By Sam Catanzaro The Santa Monica City Attorney’s Office has obtained...