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Brazilian Tembici to expand shared bicycle service

Differently from Lime and Grow, the Brazilian company should reach more cities in Latin America

Tembici' bike station in Sao Paulo
Tembici' bike station in Sao Paulo. Photo: Alf Ribeiro/Shutterstock
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  • The company is present today in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, Recife, Porto Alegre, Belém, Manaus and Vila Velha;
  • Still in 2019, the company also arrived in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Santiago, Chile

In an article on the Neofeed website, Tembici, a company founded by the Brazilians Tomás Martins and Maurício Villar, and sponsored by a number of companies, said it has plans to reach new cities in Brazil and Latin America.

It is a movement against the grain in Latin America, which, in recent weeks, has seen two companies announce plans either to reduce the operation or to leave the region entirely.

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The first was Lime, who announced his departure from several Latin American cities just six months after he landed in the region. The North American urban mobility company operated in the cities of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Bogotá (Colombia), Buenos Aires (Argentina), Montevideó (Uruguay), Lima (Peru) and Puerto Vallarta (Mexico).

The following week it was Grow, a joint venture of the Mexican Grin, that offers electric scooters, and the Brazilian Yellow, that offers shared bicycles, to announce that it was reducing operations and leaving 11 Brazilian cities.

According to the Neofeed report, Tembici would be following a different path, because it also has a different business model, which takes into account the sponsorship of major players as part of the revenues. The main one is one of the four major Brazilians banks Banco Itaú, but the company has also had the support of the Unimed, a health plan company, and the Mastercard card banner.

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Another big difference is in the company’s operation, which obliges the user to pick up and return the bikes at stations, and in the payment, which works through daily, monthly or annual packages and which require the payment of an additional amount if the contracted time is exceeded.

The company is present today in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, Recife, Porto Alegre, Belém, Manaus and Vila Velha. Still in 2019, the company also arrived in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Santiago, Chile. Tembici declined to reveal what the next cities will be, but said it should start offering electric bicycles as well.