Refurbished e-bike marketplace Upway raised $30M at a higher valuation

Upway, the French startup that refurbishes and resells electric bikes and recently launched in the U.S., has brought on new funding at a higher valuation than its previous round.

The $30 million Series B up round, led by Korelya Capital, into a startup that deals in e-bikes signals that Upway is proving out an impressive enough business case to boost its market capitalization at a time when most valuations are coming back down to earth.

Upway didn’t share its new valuation, but the fresh capital brings its total funding to $60 million.

“E-bikes’ rapid penetration represents a pivotal shift towards clean mobility, benefiting both urban and rural areas. We foresee that a streamlined, circular, and affordable ecosystem would propel this market’s growth and magnify its positive impact,” said Paul Degueuse, partner at Korelya Capital, in a statement. “In such a fast-growing market and with tens of thousands of refurbished e-bikes already sold, Upway stands out as the emerging global category leader.”

The e-bike market is slated to increase at a compound annual growth rate of 15.6% between now and 2030, up to $119.72 billion, according to a Fortune Business Insights report. As e-bike adoption grows, a secondary market for used bikes is sure to follow. And while there are countless companies shipping new e-bikes, few are building a name for themselves as a reputable marketplace for used bikes. If it hasn’t already, Upway has a chance to corner the market.

For Upway’s customers, it comes down to a seamless ordering and delivery process and the assurance that the bikes and their batteries are high quality and safe. No one wants to just buy a used e-bike on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace from a random person. Upway’s bikes go through a rigorous inspection process and come with a one-year warranty. The platform also provides a range of e-bike brands — like Specialized, Cannondale, Rad Power — and vehicle types — including city/hybrid vehicles, road, mountain, cargo and folding — at up to a 60% discounted rate.

Upway’s investors, like Sequoia Capital, no doubt take heed in the startup’s rapid expansion since its seed round in 2021. The company has expanded beyond France and into Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and the U.S., and has refurbished and sold over 20,000 e-bikes across those countries. That includes the more than 2,000 e-bikes processed in Upway’s New York warehouse since launching there in March.

“Combined with Upway’s speed of execution and financial discipline, this has translated into a fast-growing business with very healthy and rapidly improving unit economics, which builds trust in the long-term trajectory of the business,” Toussaint Wattinne, CEO and co-founder of Upway, told TechCrunch.

Upway intends to use the fresh funding to expand further in the U.S. Today, it is fulfilling orders nationwide from its NYC warehouse, but wants to better accommodate its West Coast customers. Wattinne said Upway plans to launch a new warehouse in Los Angeles in 2024.

“The goal is to be able to receive, service and ship from both coasts to provide our customers with quick delivery and spread out the workload among our mechanics and team,” he said.