Benzinga hosted the Cleantech Small Cap Conference featuring small cap companies in the clean energy field. One of the panels hosted was “The Micromobility Revolution.”
The panel was moderated by Cassidy Shell, a lead analyst with Cleantech Group and included panelists Mark Frohnmayer from Arcimoto Inc FUV, Rod Keller from AYRO Inc AYRO and Salvatore Palella of Helbiz, which is going public with GreenVision Acquisition Corp GRNV.
Pandemic Challenges: The COVID-19 pandemic created some challenges for many companies, including those involved in micromobility.
“2020 was hugely challenging for just about everyone,” Frohnmayer said.
The supply chain in China was closed for several weeks, impacting Ayro which was also in product development of a new vehicle.
“It pushed the timeline out for us,” Keller said.
The closure of many universities also hurt part of Ayro’s business that sells vehicles to schools.
Growth During Pandemic: Arcimoto's Frohnmayer noted that 2020 was also transformative for his company during the pandemic as last-mile delivery went to the moon.
Ayro's Keller echoed the sentiment that the pandemic increased demand and visibility of food delivery vehicles.
“The silver lining was food delivery vehicles,” he said. “With COVID, this became a very popular way to deliver food and beverage on campus.”
Helbiz has seen a big boost with the increased amount of people getting the COVID-19 vaccine.
“Everyone is now out,” Palella said.
What’s Next: Helbiz's Palella told viewers his company has strong relationships around the world to help increase the company’s profile and sales in several countries. The company is also signing more fleet deals.
Helbiz is working with more cities on micromobility and public transportation integration, according to Pallela.
“We are working with a couple of cities in the U.S. trying to integrate public transportation,” Palella said.
Ayro signed a deal with Element Fleet Management in March, which Keller highlighted during the presentation. The partner is the largest fleet company in the world and could increase demand for Ayro products.
Ayro is working on making vehicles specific for food delivery, rather than companies having to configure vehicles down the road to make it work for them.
“We believe we’re taking a disruptive approach to it,” Keller said.
Frohnmayer would like to see more adoption of using smaller vehicles to run everyday errands.
“We’re using an F-150 to get a cup of coffee, which is nuts,” Frohnmayer said.
Arcimoto is now piloting its last-mile delivery vehicle called the Deliverator, according to Frohnmayer.
Frohnmayer also said he would like to see a standardization for smaller micromobility charging infrastructure.
(Photo: Arcimoto's Deliverator courtesy Arcimoto)
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