operator of Wukong shared bikes has announced plans to exit the market
as of this month, making it the first brand to throw in the towel amid
the fierce competition of China’s bike-sharing industry.
Lei Houyi, the founder of Wukong, told Thepaper.cn that the company has
returned the deposits and remaining balances of its users. The company
deployed a total of 1,200 bikes in Chongqing, but 90 percent of them
have now disappeared.
Wukong’s business model was another drawback. Lei initially pinned his
hopes on a crowdfunding mode in which people pay 1,100 RMB to get the
rights to one bike. The bike’s owner then receives 70 percent of the
profits generated by that bike. However, as the bikes can be ridden
virtually free of charge, the project failed to generate a profit, which
made the model less intriguing for potential partners.