— Jump Bikes came third place in fight for two licences.
City Council has confirmed.
The hybrid dockless licences offered by Dublin City Council included the requirement to lock bicycles to public bicycle stands to avoid clutter on footpaths as experienced in other cities.
Chinese firm Ofo, which also sought a license, expressed its annoyance with the locking requirement, but the Uber-owned Jump Bikes already runs hybrid systems using its electric shared bicycles.
The Jump Bikes bid was ranked third place in the licensing process last year, loosing out to Bleeper and Urbo, both Irish-owned.
Two operators, Urbo and Bleeperbike, which were successful bidding for a license, turned up to a PR launch bike share services at the end of May last year. But Urbo has since failed to put any bicycles on the capital’s streets. It told The Times that they would be launching last July, but it has yet to do so.
Urbo pulled out of a number of areas in London citing pressure from Chinese bicycle rental companies and issues with scaling its service, and then there was an ownership change shortly after it was supposed to launch in Dublin.
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A Freedom of Information request submitted to the council by a third party with knowledge of the Jump Bikes bid shows there was no due diligence process because the council did not view the licensing as a tendering process.
“The issue of due diligence or tender price does not therefore apply”, the council said in the FOI response. The council did not reply directly to this and previously refused to comment on the rankings saying all the bidders were debriefed.
A spokeswoman for Dublin city council said: “The Council has been in further contact with Urbo and has agreed to hold its licence open until it expires in May 2019 to afford them every opportunity to commence operations.”
She added: “If operations do not commence the Council will re-advertise for licence applications which will be assessed in a similar manner to the original applications. The Council continues to work closely with the other licence holder Bleeperbikes with a view to further enhancing their services.”
Jump Bikes runs electric bicycle share services in Berlin and 16 cities in The United Stares, including San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles and Seattle.
Hermione Randolph, a spokeswoman for Jump Bikes, said: “We hope to bring Jump to the UK and Ireland in the future, but have no immediate plans to do so. Over time it’s our goal to help people replace their car with their phone by offering a range of mobility options – whether cars, bikes, or public transport – all in the Uber app.”
Urbo did not respond to a number of requests for comment.
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