Bike & Park featured on Sustainable Brands
Bike & Park was recently featured in an article by Mike Hower on SustainableBrands.com
The original article appears here: http://www.sustainablebrands.com/news_and_views/articles/bringing-back-bike-one-start-ups-plan-forever-change-commute and you can view the article below.
To prepare for this year's Sustainable Brands Innovation Open (SBIO) competition, we're catching up with some of our favorite entrepreneurial ventures from competitions past ...
Imagine being able to ride your bike miles to work and arrive fresh, without sweat, dressed and ready to take on the day. Thanks to sustainability start-up Bike & Park, this is not mere fantasy — it is already happening in Chicago, Santa Monica and Cincinnati.
When bicycles were first engineered in the early 19th century, they were meant to be a practical alternative to the day’s dominant mode of transportation — horses; the first bicycle prototype was even called a “dandy horse.” Today there are around a billion bikes worldwide and in many regions they continue to be the primary means of transportation.
But not in the U.S.; according to the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center, only 5 percent of Americans ride bicycles to work each day.
Why? Well, besides commuters’ completely understandable fear of being branded “the sweaty guy or gal” in the office, many American cities are just not bike-friendly. Although these days it is more common to find bike lanes alongside motorways, they exist as more of an afterthought to a car-centric paradigm. This is where Bike & Park comes in.
Bike & Park helps reduce the need for polluting vehicles by making bike commuting easy, cheap and convenient. Customers can rent bikes at Bike & Park stations, ride to another station, drop it off and even shower and clean their clothes before heading on foot to their destination.
“We started Bike & Park to inspire people to ride bicycles for the benefit of their health, their spirit and the planet,” said Jeremy Rothschild, Director of Marketing. “By partnering with progressive communities to create spaces and programs that encourage people to ride, we enable them to make positive changes in their lives.”
The start-up recently celebrated the first anniversary of its Santa Monica Bike Center, which now boasts more than 300 members. The League of American Bicyclists has awarded the center a Bicycle-Friendly Business Award and the site has garnered lots of media attention, including an appearance on "The Today Show."
Bike & Park attributes much of its current success to its participation in last year’s SBIO competition, where it contended with several other finalists and ultimately won the “People’s Choice Award.”
“The experience of interacting with the other finalists was great,” said Rothschild. “We had a very strong field of finalists but the atmosphere was open and collaborative. We left the Sustainable Brands conference feeling reinvigorated and refocused on our mission.”
Each year, SBIO finalists are invited to present their company’s offering to a group of social and sustainability investors, executives from leading companies, top brand consultants and their peers. The winning company is awarded a free pass to a future Sustainable Brands conference and consultancy time with investors, designers and communications professionals.