Cityscoot raises $50 million for its European electric scooter service

French startup Cityscoot announced a $50 million round of financing yesterday (€40 million). RATP Capital Innovation and Inventure Partners are leading the round, with existing investors Caisse des Dépôts and LeasePlan also participating. Cityscoot operates an electric scooter-sharing service in Paris and plans to expand to other cities in France and Europe.

You can now find around 1,600 scooters in Paris or some cities next to Paris. With your phone, you book a scooter in a few seconds and type a code on the scooter to unlock it. When you’re done, you just have to park the scooter and end the ride.

And if you live in Paris, chances are you’ve seen countless Cityscoots over the past year or so. They’re completely silent and they come with a helmet in the storage space under the seat.

While Cityscoot is leasing its scooters, it’s a capital-intensive industry. For instance, Cityscoot’s (electric) cars change the batteries when they’re about to die so that they don’t have to plug the scooters themselves. It’s hard to compare Cityscoot with a tech startup that works on a digital product.

The startup now says that it plans to operate a fleet of 5,000 scooters by the end of 2018. The company had already raised $18 million (€15 million) in 2016.

Cityscoot is about to launch in Nice and in three other cities — one in France, one in Switzerland and one in Italy. Cityscoot is also competing with Coup in Paris.

More interestingly, Cityscoot has 70,000 clients and handles 7,000 to 9,000 rides every day. Each ride lasts 15 minutes on average. Users pay €0.20 per minute if they buy a pack of minutes, so Cityscoot makes around €3 per ride, and 4 to 6 rides per scooter per day. Those are some encouraging numbers.