Subscription Economy News: Week of 11/18/2019

November 21, 2019

Every week, we bring you the top stories and analyses from the global Subscription Economy.

This Startup Just Raised $13 Million To Build Satellites-As-A-Service

Excerpts from an article by Alex Knapp on Forbes

San Francisco-based Loft Orbital is developing a business of “satellite-as-a-service,” in which it will deploy satellites about the size of a washing machine into orbit that are loaded with different instruments or payloads for its customers.

Loft promises customers they don’t have to spend millions to build, deploy or launch a satellite to get the data they’re interested in — the company does that in exchange for milestone payments before launch and as a subscription service afterward.

“What Loft does is really flipping the script,” says co-founder Alex Greenberg, because it enables its customers to turn an upfront capital expense into an ongoing operating expense.

The company has raised over $16 million in its seed and series A rounds, and has already booked five customers for its first satellite, which will launch in the first half of 2020.

For more, read the full article on Forbes.

Bolt Bikes launches e-bike subscription platform for gig delivery workers

Excerpts from an article by Kirsten Korosec on TechCrunch.

Bolt Bikes, the Sydney, Australia-based startup founded in 2017, is taking to the U.S. and U.K. its electric bike platform designed for gig economy delivery workers.

Bolt Bikes now provides its flexible subscriptions in Sydney and Melbourne, Australia, San Francisco, and London. The company sells its electric bikes, but the main premise is to rent them out for commercial use. The electric bikes are rented on a week-to-week contract for $39.

The Bolt Bikes platform includes the electric bike, fleet management software, financing, and servicing. Subscribers get 24-hour access to the bike. A battery charger, phone holder, phone USB port, secure U-Lock, and safety induction is included. Bolt Bikes also offers the first week as a free trial.

Bolt Bikes has piqued the interest of more than investors. Postmates has been piloting a Bolt Bikes rental program in San Francisco since June. And the company has aspirations to increase its fleet and to expand to more cities in the U.S., U.K., and Australia.

For more, read the full article on TechCrunch.

Mazda has started mulling a subscription service

Excerpts from an article by Sean Szymkowski on CNET.

Subscription services have largely been relegated to smartphones, streaming platforms, and other services, yet the idea has started to trickle into the big, bad car-buying world. A handful of (mostly luxury) automakers have tossed their hats into the ring, but now perhaps Mazda is thinking about such a move.

Autocar quoted Jeremy Thomson in a Tuesday report saying there’s been some “early thinking” surrounding a subscription service, and Mazda thinks there’s a place for it in the future. This is, of course, with reference to the UK – a far smaller auto market than the U.S. by a large measure. The triumph or failure of a subscription service in the U.K. could perhaps provide insight into whether a similar service might work for the U.S.

Thomson cited younger car buyers as a reason for the early thinking around a subscription program. He said these buyers often enjoy a “simpler” way to navigate car ownership, including how to swap into a new one.

For more, read the full article on CNET and learn how Zuora helps auto companies launch subscriptions here.

RenoRun rolls out one-of-a-kind premium monthly subscription for customers

Excerpts from an article on Yahoo Finance.

RenoRun, the world’s leading building material delivery company, has developed a new premium delivery service, RenoRun Pro, making them the first construction delivery technology to offer a subscription model.

For a monthly fee of $100, RenoRun Pro users will receive free same-day deliveries. They can also order 2-hour deliveries for half the price, making each rush delivery $30 instead of $60.

“With this exciting new rollout, we expect to see ongoing savings and peace of mind for our customers,” said Eamonn O’Rourke, CEO and founder of RenoRun. “Our beta launch two months ago was wildly successful because this new service allows builders to save time, money and energy on the jobsite – it’s really a win-win for both them and the property owners who hire them.”

For more, read the full article on Yahoo Finance.

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