22 Apr '11, 12am

Maryland company keeps bike-sharing cheap with reservations made by text

Maryland company keeps bike-sharing cheap with reservations made by text

I recently served as a judge for the William James Foundation’s Socially Responsible Business Plan Competition. I’m excited to report that one of the startup companies I reviewed, WeBike , won first place in the DC regional competition on Friday. WeBike was founded by student entrepreneurs at the University of Maryland in College Park, which is where I live. Their system is unique in that users can borrow and return bikes at existing bike racks via text message, instead of requiring costly, specialized bike-sharing stations, like the systems in Paris or London. Their strategy keeps overhead costs and potential bureaucratic hassles at a minimum. Here’s how WeBike works: Bike locations are posted on WeBike’s website. Registered users ask for the combination of the bike they want by text message. When they’re done with the bike, they park it at any bike rack and text the loca...

Full article: http://switchboard.nrdc.org/blogs/dlovaas/webike_text-bas...

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