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Lyft wins major bike-share victory in San Francisco court



Lyft won a big court victory for his bike rental service last week.

On Thursday, a judge in San Francisco ruled that Motivate, the bike share operator that Lyft bought a year ago, has exclusive rights to rent bicycles in the city.

The preliminary decision in the case, originally submitted by Lyft in June, when the city began requesting proposals for renting bicycles without a dock, also says that Lyft has the "first offer" on electric bicycles.

And while the decision does not necessarily mean that Lyft's newly reintroduced electric bicycles are the only electric bicycles in San Francisco, the decision could turn out to be a big tailwind for the company.

"This is an important pen in the Lyft cap, as they put more than one fence around their SF backyard on the bicycle part," said Dan Ives, an analyst at Wedbush Securities, a Business Insider.

"This is the last mile and this decision was an important step in the right direction for the Lyft ecosystem to penetrate more into this market opportunity, there were concerns about the outcome of this and Lyft came out as the winner," Ives said.

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Lyft does not break the individual metrics for its motorcycle and scooter business, but Wall Street analysts believe it could be beneficial in the long term, as the company seeks to increase the total number of users and trips, especially from company contracts. in other major cities. They are equally exclusive.

"We believe that increasing the number of use cases at Lyft, including through options such as travel and motorcycles and scooters, can boost active users," JPMorgan said in a research note earlier this summer.

A spokesman for Lyft said the company hopes to expand its electric bicycle program, which also hit the streets in East Bay, about 19 kilometers from San Francisco, last week.

"We are pleased that the judge agrees with our position and we are eager to move forward," the spokesperson said. "We are and are ready to immediately implement our new hybrid electric bicycles in San Francisco and we are waiting for the green light from SFMTA."

A San Francisco city attorney told Courthouse News that the city hopes that having multiple operators can help avoid another situation like the one that occurred in April, when a brake problem forced Lyft to remove his electric bicycles from San Francisco, as well as New York.

"We want to make sure that the system is not entirely composed of a type of bicycle trailer provided by Lyft," City Attorney Kenneth Walczak told Courthouse News. "We want to make sure that residents have access to the options."


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