McKinsey & Company: The future of micromobility: Ridership and revenue after a crisis

The COVID-19 crisis is causing serious disruptions to the multibillion-dollar micromobility industry. Our analysis indicates that a full recovery is possible, as long as companies prepare for the next normal

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected millions of people worldwide, bankrupted businesses, and plunged the global economy into crisis. While lockdown measures and shelter-at-home orders are helping contain the coronavirus, they have also brought severe financial hardship. Amid a new reality of working from home, canceling trips, and even forgoing outings to restaurants and grocery stores, the micromobility industry—encompassing a range of lightweight vehicles such as bicycles, e-scooters, and mopeds—is facing devastating declines in ridership and revenue.

The blow to micromobility came just as the industry was accelerating. In 2019, a banner year, our models predicted that the micromobility industry would be a $300 billion to $500 billion market by 2030. Our benchmark assessment of micromobility’s potential impact on the city of Munich also suggested good things ahead. Then, the pandemic hit. With the number of passenger-kilometers traveled declining 50 to 60 percent worldwide since the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, use of micromobility solutions has declined dramatically. To determine the full impact of the pandemic on this sector, as well as on future developments, we examined micromobility over three time horizons (Exhibit 1):

  • Short term. What effect is the global lockdown having on micromobility now?
  • Medium term. Will we see a complete recovery, and what will the next normal look like?
  • Long term. What effects will the pandemic have on our 2030 market modeling?

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SOURCE: McKinsey & Company

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