Helbiz and Wheels have signed a letter of intent for Helbiz to acquire the Los Angeles-based shared micro-mobility platform by the end of this year, in primarily an all-stock deal.
Like Helbiz, Wheels began with the goal of changing how people move through their communities while lessening their dependence on climate-harming transportation options. The Wheels model – from its vehicle type to its business model – presents an entirely new way of thinking about micro-mobility.
Founded in 2018 by veterans of the micro-mobility and shared transportation industries including Zipcar, Bird and Uber, Wheels features sit-down vehicles that have a low center of gravity and 14-inch wheels to help navigate uneven pavement surfaces. It helped pioneer swappable battery technology which keeps the vehicles on the streets longer.
Furthermore, this acquisition will expand the cities Helbiz serves, enhance the team, and increase our capabilities.
From a strategic perspective, this acquisition will expand the cities served, enhance margins, and reduce costs. Our focus is to adapt and grow with eventual profitability at the core of every decision. This acquisition makes us even more confident in our ability to achieve that goal in the next 18 months.Salvatore Palella, CEO of Helbiz
“The next phase of the micro-mobility industry will be about the right teams, products and partner ecosystems all coming together coupled with tight operational excellence to enable profitable growth. This combination of a uniquely differentiated vehicle platform, cloud-based software, and talent positions us for market leadership in the short and long term around additional and larger geographic and vertical markets via focused innovation and operational efficiencies.”Tarkan Maner, Wheels board chair and Chief Commercial Officer of Nutanix
More transportation options for all
Helbiz users will benefit from an even more diverse and innovative fleet. The transportation options will include e-bikes, e-scooters, mopeds, adaptive vehicles, and Wheels’ two-wheeled sit-down devices.
At completion, the new venture will bring together cutting-edge technologies, ranging from Wheels’ unique vehicle with patented integrated helmet to Helbiz’s AI-powered sidewalk detection system and helmet selfie technology.
Wheels joining the Helbiz team is an ideal pairing. The combined business should have a clear path to profitability and help define the future of micro-mobility.Ben Boyer, Wheels board member and General Partner of Tenaya Capital
Thanks to a shared vision and purpose, this combination is set to open new horizons within dockless mobility.