Are you familiar with Revel, the company that is responsible for bringing a shared moped service to cities in hopes of making it easier to get around and reducing the impact on the climate? You might be intensely familiar with the company. Maybe you even follow their every move. On the other hand, this might be the first time that you're hearing about them. Either way, you can't deny that it's an interesting concept. After all, the idea of true public transportation is that it allows you to safely and securely get around a city without having to jump on the bus or rely on purchasing your own car. That is something that's worth paying attention to. As a result, there is every chance that you're curious to learn more about this company. Here are 20 things about them that will probably only serve to make you want to learn even more.
1. They got their start in New York
The company started their first operation in Brooklyn. As far as a lot of people are concerned, it only makes sense that they would have started their operations in a place like New York. It's a very large city in a relatively concentrated area. Furthermore, there are businesses and residential areas that are more or less mixed together. It makes it an almost ideal place to start a business like this. As a matter of fact, you might even go as far as saying that if the business couldn't have succeeded here, it would have been seemingly impossible for them to succeed anywhere. As such, this served as an honest test of the company's ability to sort out problems and find a way to navigate through them. The fact that they're still in business says something about their ability to do this.
2. They’ve only been in business for a few years
As a matter of fact, they only went into business in 2018. Unfortunately, they had been in business just long enough that they were beginning to think that the spring of 2020 would be a time when they could really start making some of the money that they invested back, and then the pandemic hit. People essentially stopped going places and that hit the company very hard. They were more or less forced to go into survival mode but they clearly figured a way to work through it. Fortunately, they were able to come out of it on the other side. That's more than a lot of businesses were able to do.
3. They’ve since expanded to other cities
As it turns out, their operations were quite successful in Brooklyn. This eventually allowed them to expand into other cities. Currently, they are also operating in both Oakland and Berkeley, California. They're also in Washington, D.C. and Miami, along with San Francisco. For just over a year, they had an operation in Austin, Texas. However, that market wasn't as lucrative as they had hoped it would be and they were essentially forced to cease operations there.
4. Their mopeds are comfortable and provide effective transportation
One of the reasons that this method of transportation works is because it's effective. Their mopeds are capable of seating two people rather comfortably and they're designed to travel between one and three miles, making them great options for people who are traveling between different business venues in a downtown area. The mopeds are also capable of traveling at up to 30 mph, so you're not going to be wasting a lot of time if you decide to use one of them. Better yet, you can use them to travel between a business area and a nearby residential area. If you're lucky enough to live very close by, you might be able to use this form of transportation to get wherever you need to go without ever having to think about buying a car or stepping on a bus again.
5. They’ve been under scrutiny for safety issues
It probably doesn't come as any surprise that they've also come under scrutiny for some safety issues, as they are a relatively new transportation company. It only stands to reason that anything involving some type of motorized transport is going to experience these types of growing pains because accidents can and will occur. Unfortunately, these accidents often result in litigation, something that the company has already experienced a number of times. They are currently working to reduce the chances of these types of things happening again in the future.
6. They don’t subscribe to the idea of the gig economy
The company could potentially take advantage of the gig economy movement where people are more or less considered self-employed, working as a contractor instead of as traditional employees. However, the company refuses to hire people under this type of system, preferring instead to hire all of their employees as traditional staff members who get regular paychecks and benefits. They feel like workers are taken advantage of in what has now become coined the gig economy and they want absolutely no part of it.
7. All of their mopeds are easily identifiable
In the interest of making sure that all of their mopeds can be easily identified, they're all painted the same color. You might even say that they've taken things a step further by painting them one of the brightest shades of blue that they can find. Known as electric blue, it definitely makes anything painted that color stand out. That makes it easier for potential customers to find their mopeds, but there is also a safety factor involved here. It makes the mopeds easier to see when other people are driving, thereby reducing the chances that an accident might potentially occur.
8. They’re expanding into other areas of business
He is definitely not relying solely on mopeds in order to remain successful. In fact, they've expanded into a few other seemingly related areas of business including a subscription service for e-bikes, a rideshare service that only uses all-electric vehicles and last but not least, charging stations for electric vehicles. If you think you see a pattern here, that's because you do.
9. They have a genuine interest in protecting the planet
As you can tell from the information contained in the above paragraph, they have a genuine interest in making sure that they do their part to protect the planet. That's precisely why they focus on electric modes of transportation, even when it comes to their ridesharing services. It would be easy to focus on these types of services involving traditional vehicles with internal combustion engines. One could even say that they are still doing their part to protect the planet because they are trying to reduce the number of vehicles on the road. However, the company decided early on that they wouldn't be satisfied with that and decided to kick things up a notch by making sure that everything they get involved with uses electric vehicles. For them, doing anything less would have been akin to phoning it in.
10. The CEO got the idea for the company after spending time in Europe
The company's CEO, Frank Reig, essentially got the idea after spending a fair amount of time in Europe. All across Europe, he saw people getting from place to place with mopeds as opposed to using automobiles. It got him thinking about the way that people view transportation in the United States. In short, he saw a market for this type of transportation that had yet to be tapped and he decided he was going to be the one to get to it first. For him, it provides a much-needed means of transportation that is environmentally friendly and it also gives him an opportunity to make some serious money in the process.
11. They started with just 68 mopeds
There's no doubt about it, their CEO has nerves of steel. After he got the idea for this particular business, he quit his own job, raised money for the mopeds and the rest is history. Initially, he was able to raise just over $1 million, enough to buy about 68 mopeds and cover start-up costs. The success of the business was dependent upon him being able to make a go of things and if he hadn't, he basically had no back-up plan.
12. They now operate 6,000 of them
You might say that the business has succeeded fairly well. As a matter of fact, the company that started out with only 68 mopeds now operates 6,000 of them. 3,000 of them alone are located in New York City. The others are distributed among the five other cities where the company operates. In addition, they are continuing to expand. Granted, they may not be expanding as quickly as they would have liked, but they're getting the job done.
13. They’re not afraid to make mistakes
Reig has said on numerous occasions that the company isn’t afraid to make mistakes. In fact, he seems to understand that making mistakes is the only way to learn and grow. The entire company culture is one of putting their collective heads down and going for it, learning as they go.
14. They tend to admit to their mistakes
Since they know ahead of time that they are bound to make some mistakes, they also have a tendency to own up to those mistakes immediately as opposed to trying to sweep things under the rug and act like something never happened. Despite the fact that they've had some serious growing pains, this has given them a level of transparency within the general public that has generated a great deal of trust.
15. They have big plans on the horizon
To say that they have big plans might be an understatement in and of itself. In fact, they plan to roll out an entire fleet of all electric vehicles that can be used for their own cab service in the very near future. On one hand, that seems like a far cry from the business that got started with less than 100 mopeds. On the other hand, they're still focusing on transportation and they're choosing to do it with all electric vehicles, so it's really the same thing they've been doing, but on a grander scale.
16. They’ve had push back from the city
Unfortunately, they've experienced more than their fair share of pushback from officials in New York. Apparently, city officials feel like the market for these types of vehicles is oversaturated and they don't want any more cabs coming into the city, even when the company is offering a fleet that is entirely electric.
17. The company isn’t backing down, either
The city might have a bigger fight on its hands than it had anticipated. The company says they're not backing down, either. As a matter of fact, they went as far as saying that what the city was doing was illegal and that it blocked free enterprise. Once they get the legal matters out of the way, the company says they're ready to roll the fleet out almost immediately.
18. They don’t mind sharing
They may even open their own charging station for their own fleet of electric vehicles. That said, they've also made it clear that this charging station will be open to the public as well. In short, anyone that needs to use it can do so.
19. They believe in fostering good relationships
The company knows that they can't get anywhere if they don't have solid relationships with consumers and city officials alike. As such, they work closely with not only their consumers, but also with officials who are part of each city in which they operate. Their goal is to foster a close working relationship as opposed to doing something that they have to go back and change later on because they didn't ask for permission to begin with.
20. They’ve gained a solid reputation
Doing business this way has allowed them to gain a solid reputation despite the fact that they've gone through some difficult aspects of the growing process. As a matter of fact, it's one of the main reasons why they have remained in business through everything from legal struggles to a pandemic which has shut down businesses that were around for years before this one ever even started.
Written by Allen Lee
Read more posts by Allen Lee