Lyft joins bikeshare race with Motivate acquisition

Motivate operates New York’s Citi Bike and other bikeshare services across the country. (Motivate Photo)

Lyft is getting into bikeshare with the acquisition of Motivate, a company that operates large bikeshare programs around the country. Lyft announced plans to acquire motivate Monday, a deal that will allow the ride-hailing app to better compete with its chief rival Uber, which bought bikeshare startup JUMP in April.

Lyft said it plans to launch dockless bikeshare programs with electric-assist bicycles around the country in a blog post Monday. Under the deal, Lyft will acquire Motivate’s technology and contracts with cities. Motivate will still operate a standalone business maintaining bikes and managing operations under its current name.

Lyft plans to launch bikeshare services in the company’s top markets and cities where Motivate already operates. Motivate runs New York’s Citi Bike, Chicago’s Divvy, Washington D.C.’s Capital Bikeshare, and other services in major U.S. cities.

The deal brings Lyft into a crowded market. Bikeshare is taking off in the U.S., with Lime, Spin, Ofo, Uber, and other competitors fighting for dominance.

“Bikeshare is a natural extension of Lyft’s core approach to improving transportation access and building community through offerings such as shared rides and the integration of public transit in our app,” Lyft said in the announcement.

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