Jump, Uber’s brand focused on electric bikes and scooters, will halt operations next week in San Diego, a warm weather city that’s been seen as a natural fit for this form of transportation. Jump bikes will also disappear from Atlanta later this week, but its scooters will remain in the city.
This summer in San Diego and Atlanta, Uber began promoting bikes and scooters on its app’s home screen, giving the car alternatives more visibility.
“Our goal is to make Jump electric bikes and scooters a sustainable part of the transportation ecosystem. We currently have Jump products in over 25 cities worldwide and we make operational decisions on a case by case basis,” Uber said in a statement.
San Diego and Atlanta are the latest examples of Uber curtailing or halting Jump operations. It also stopped offering bikes in Dallas and San Antonio this June, and two weeks ago announced it was ending its program in Staten Island, New York. Uber also temporarily removed its e-bikes from Providence, Rhode Island earlier this month, after the bikes were used in crimes. But the company said it plans to return them to streets after finding a solution.
The news comes at a difficult time for Uber. It recently announced it lost $5.2 billion in the second quarter of this year, its largest quarterly loss ever. In July, Uber laid off roughly 400 people – about a third of its global marketing staff. On Monday, the company confirmed that it cut 435 positions from its product and engineering teams.
Uber’s stock has also dropped nearly 25% since its initial public offering in May.
In April 2018, Uber bought Jump, a bikeshare startup known for its popular e-bikes. It’s since expanded in the US and overseas. Jump has also joined the electric scooter trend and offers them for rent in many cities.
Uber sees the bikes and scooters as an alternative transportation solution for short trips, noting some riders have gravitated from cars to the smaller vehicles.
Uber has followed the rest of the bike and scooter industry by raising prices and adopting a per-minute charge, making longer Jump bike rides more expensive, but very short trips more affordable.