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Sequoia-backed e-bike marketplace Upway nets $30M

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Nov 16, 2023
an illustration of an electric bicycle surrounded by circles and cutouts of dollar bills

Illustration: Tiffany Herring/Axios

Upway closed a $30 million Series B to buy, refurbish, and resell used electric bicycles.

Why it matters: The website offers a safer alternative to Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace.

Driving the news: Korelya Capital led the all-equity round, which closed last month.

  • Existing investors Sequoia Capital, Exor Ventures, and European climate fund Transition joined.

How it works: Instead of simply connecting other bike sellers with shoppers, Upway is buying and fixing secondhand bikes itself.

  • "There's simply no meaningful capacity from third parties to refurbish e-bikes at scale," CEO Toussaint Wattinne tells Axios.

Zoom in: The French company opened its first U.S. warehouse in — where else — Brooklyn.

  • "The U.S. has been our most successful country launch," Wattinne says.
  • The company expects to open a warehouse next year in Los Angeles. It's also planning to expand warehouse capacity in Europe.

What they're saying: "There's a big gap and big lack of trust in buying a used e-bike as-is," Wattinne says. "It's a complex product: there's a motor and battery you simply cannot assess in a reliable way. And should something go wrong, there's nobody to turn to."

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