Bounce: A Transportation Start-up that’s taking a Hit
Bounce, a promising start-up in the transportation sector, has recently undergone a second round of layoffs, raising concerns about the company’s future. The Bangalore-based company, which was founded in 2014, offers dockless bike and scooter rental services in major Indian cities. It has a fleet of over 20,000 two-wheelers, operates in around 40 cities across India, and recently expanded into the Middle East.
Bounce was started by Vivekananda Hallekere, Varun Agni, and Anil G in 2014. The company began as a bike rental service, but soon diversified into dockless scooter rentals. Bounce’s services are available via its mobile app, which allows users to locate and unlock the bikes and scooters. The company’s focus on affordable and convenient transportation has earned it a loyal customer base.
Funding and Investors
Bounce has raised over $400 million in funding so far, with its latest funding round being a Series D round that raised $214 million led by Accel and B Capital Group. Other notable investors in the company include Chiratae Ventures, Qualcomm Ventures, and Sequoia India.
How They are Performing
Despite its early success, the COVID-19 pandemic hit Bounce hard. The nationwide lockdown in India in 2020 brought the company’s services to a standstill, resulting in massive revenue losses. After resuming services post the lockdown, the company experienced a gradual recovery in demand. However, the demand for mobility has not yet fully recovered, leading to the company’s recent layoffs.
Reasons for Layoffs
According to reports, Bounce had to lay off about 200 employees in February 2021, representing around 40% of its workforce. The company cited reduced demand for its services as the primary reason for the layoffs. The pandemic has changed people’s travel patterns, with many people preferring private vehicles instead of shared ones. This shift in consumer behavior has hit Bounce’s business hard, leading to the need for cost-cutting measures.
Statements from Company Stakeholders
In a recent statement, Bounce’s co-founder and CEO, Vivekananda Hallekere, said that the layoffs were a difficult decision to make, but these measures were necessary to ensure the company’s long-term sustainability. He stated that the company is committed to providing its employees with fair compensation and support during this difficult time. He also said that the company is working on new products and services to adapt to the changing market conditions.