It’s not every day we hear of two companies offering a perfect marriage between a product and a service. In this case, though, we have an electric mobility platform with a highly praised electric scooter (e-scooter) and a delivery service solution that are together wrapped up as one. GenZe and its e-scooter have just partnered with Postmate’s zero-emission transportation solutions for New York City and San Francisco.
Who Is GenZe?
You might have heard or seen the name GenZe. If not, you ought to know that the company started the $1,500 e-bike market shakedown when it first introduced its e-101* at that price years ago. In 2013, the company showed up at the AltCar Expo in Santa Monica and presented two models that immediately caught my attention. One of them was an electric bicycle (e-bike) and the other was an interesting-looking e-scooter. There was something different about the GenZe e-bicycle, now called the GenZe 2.0 (and, actually, now up to its 2.0e iteration), but I couldn’t put my finger on it.
A long talk later with engineers and officers, I learned this little GenZe e-scooter was unlike anything I had ever seen or heard of before. It was seriously well designed, included plenty of thought on security and mobile connectivity, and was choke full of gadgets we had heard of but seldom seen on an electric vehicle (EV), such as motion detectors to let you know if and when your GenZe is getting stolen. Beyond that, the other noticeable engineering golden touch is a larger front wheel than the rear. The reason is simple. A large front wheel makes for better handling and rides dynamics. And, indeed, the GenZe scooter brakes to a halt with aplomb and confidence.
Another aspect that caught my eye was that it seemed to exhibit a sort of exoskeleton frame. It looked as if the GenZe e-scooter, now called the GenZe 2.0, neatly wrapped around the knees and potentially would protect you up to the basin. This added safety feature made me feel the company was rock solid, at least in its engineering and vision. Overall, this sub-$5,000 electric scooter, back then launched at $3,000, also has a ton of cargo space. The GenZe 2.0 has improved in various ways but still costs $3,599.
Technically speaking, the GenZe 2.0 has a range of 30 miles, sporting a 1.6 kWh, 110 V removable Li-ion battery pack that can be plugged into any standard outlet and recharged in 3.5 hrs.
The seat doesn’t just move up and down in a traditional sense but allows you to sit and raise it until you lean back into it, sort of a stand-up rest position when riding it with its cargo area full.
The best part about GenZe was that it wanted to make a splash. And it did with its e-bikes. The e-101 is accompanied by the e-102, a more practical frame version of the 101. Both are 46 pounds and come with a neatly tucked into the frame battery pack that is detachable. But remember that back then Pedego reigned supreme with heavy Chinese-converted bicycles, and seeing conversions was more common than now. GenZe shook the industry by introducing a great entry-level e-bike, the 101 and 102 being reasonably priced at $1,500. Ever since, plenty of other companies have come into the entry-level bracket to shake things up.
What About Postmates?
Postmates is a different story but one that blends products and services by using the GenZe 2.0. Often referred to as the next generation of transportation technology aimed at reducing emissions and congestion, Postmates connects communities and businesses by enabling anyone to have anything delivered on-demand. San Francisco–headquartered Postmates now operates in 200 cities across the US. This innovative on-demand logistics platform shunts goods around, and by connecting customers and merchant businesses to a national network of deliverers known as “Postmates,” the company has facilitated the delivery of more than $1 billion worth of goods. Genze e-scooter partnering with Postmates makes perfect sense.
The GenZe — Postmates Partnership
The GenZe e-scooter partnership with Postmates expands additional locations in more than 200 cities planned next year. By using the SF-based Scoot Networks, hailed as one of the nation’s largest shared electric scooter vehicle operators, the partnership introduces on-demand networks connecting communities to products, services, and experiences — all the meanwhile cutting traffic congestion and gas station visits.
Final Thoughts on the GenZe e-scooter Partnership with Postmates
The holy grail of this economy is certainly not only crowd-based or privately controlled. Manufacturers tend to benefit highly from new startup services offering what is needed now, not in 10 years. GM understood that when it financed Maven, as just one example. You stand to reap the most benefits when you align a manufacturer and a service provider.
The GenZe e-scooter partnership with Postmates points the way to go for many more companies.
Here is the rest of the press release:
“FIA Formula E electric vehicle racing event, NYC ePrix, Silicon Valley-based GenZe and innovative community logistics platform Postmates announced a groundbreaking partnership to bring zero-emission transportation solutions to New York City and San Francisco.
Particularly in dense, urban populations, the ability to get around traffic, park, or get across town efficiently makes the difference in earnings generated, delivery times for a customer, and the sales rates for merchants. With an initial deployment of the GenZe 2.0e model e-Scooter and e-Bike in two of the country’s largest delivery markets, Postmates plans to expand the partnership to additional locations in its more than 200-city network over the next year – offering couriers a cost-effective way to take up even more orders and enabling customers to realize faster delivery times.
“We know our network of hard-working Postmates are also students, parents, and teachers who lead busy lives,” said Vivek Patel, vice president of business operations at Postmates. “By simply making a handful of deliveries a week, each of them will now be able to retain new vehicle solutions for unlimited use in their personal lives, while connecting orders to our customers even faster and earning even more when they’re on the platform. And by recognizing a responsibility to take steps to safeguard our planet, these environmentally-friendly transportation options offer a sustainable and clean-energy business solution to minimize our carbon footprint.”
While today’s announcement follows GenZe’s long partnership with SF-based Scoot Networks, the nation’s largest electric scooter shared vehicle operator, based in San Francisco – the partnership with Postmates marks a new era of On-Demand platforms enabling their networks to connect communities to new products and experiences while avoiding traffic and gas stations.
GenZe Chief Marketing Officer Tom Valasek said, “The GenZe 2.0e boasts an easily-removable/lockable battery, an electronic locking center stand and large secure ‘back bay’ cargo compartment. Uniquely, it has a connected telematics CANBus system that can feed GPS and data from 120 vehicle sensors through an API to third-party apps. From anywhere, users can see the battery level, performance, be alerted if it is moved, track location, and even disable it remotely if there is unauthorized use.”
“We designed our e-Scooters and e-Bikes to provide consumers with a zero-emission, convenient and safe solution to traffic gridlock,” said Valasek. “However, enterprising delivery businesses, college campuses, government transportation directors, tourism companies, private rental fleet operators and corporations have realized the unique benefits GenZe can provide to their organizations.”
GenZe and Postmates executives highlighted the technology and partnership at a press meeting following the NYC ePRIX race – a Formula One-like event held on New York City public streets, exclusively featuring electric vehicles.
*Disclaimer: The author is currently test riding the GenZe e-101 e-bike on long-term loan from the company.