Bike-Sharing Startup Ofo Faces Very Unclear Future

By That's, July 2, 2019

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A court ruling in Tianjin has determined that bike-sharing company Ofo has “basically no assets” and is therefore unable to repay its debts to suppliers and users, according to Quartz.

Bicycle supplier Tianjin Fuji-Ta Bicycle sued the shared bike company for roughly USD36 million earlier this year, but the court ruled that Ofo could not repay the Tianjin company, noting that whatever assets Ofo does have are currently frozen. 

In December of last year, thousands of Ofo users lined up outside the company’s Beijing headquarters, demanding a refund for their bike deposits. The disgruntled crowd was the voice for over 10 million registered users who were requesting refunds, which would have cost the firm USD170 million. Ofo has also recently withdrawn its overseas operations in the US, Japan and Singapore. 

Experts noted vandalism and theft as well as a slowing Chinese economy for reasons that the startup has quickly unraveled. The Beijing-based firm has previously stated that it would continue to operate normally. 

The court ruling came just weeks after Guangzhou approved 400,000 new shared bikes to used in the city.  While three competitors – Mobike, Hellobike and Qingju – were given the green light to add to their bike quota in Guangdong’s capital city, Ofo was not granted permission to bring more bikes to Canton. 

READ MORE: Thousands of Pissed Off Users Line Up Outside Ofo's Beijing HQ

[Cover image via Pixabay]

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