Äike is also the only e-scooter brand that manufactures its e-scooters outside of China. Äike is actually also one of the very few fully vertically integrated micromobility companies in the world.
Our 100% renewable energy-based factory is located in Tallinn, Estonia and it’s where we house everything from product development, to battery pack manufacturing and electronics assembly. As a subsidiary of KÕU Mobility Group, we also develop our own IoT in-house, making our Äike scooters an industry leader in IoT integrated “smart” scooters.
We source and use as many recycled materials as possible when building our Äike vehicles, and we develop products with a view to re-recycle them once they reach the end of their lifespan. Around 70% of our supply chain comes within a 2h radius of our factory meaning we are keeping as much of the production process local as possible.
The Äike has a rich history of electric vehicle engineering and IoT development. Our newest model, the Äike T, brings all this experience together in a range of world-first innovations: most notably, the Äike T is the e first ever e-scooter with USB-C charging capabilities, as well as the first e-scooter with automatic AI keyless unlocking. There are even more features being announced soon, too!
How did you come up with the idea for the company?
Äike was born in 2021 from our mission to create the most sustainable and user-friendly private scooters in the entire world. Äike is the offspring of Comodule – one of the world’s biggest & most experienced experts in vehicle IoT, having connected close to a million light electric vehicles to the internet since 2014.
The reason my co-founders and I decided to go into micromobility was that we had always been fans of building vehicles and going above and beyond to create something special. Back in the early days, we were actually the engineers of one of the top 5 Student Formula Racing cars in the entire world. But we noticed a huge flaw – cars are only causing problems in our cities.
We started off by developing IoT modules as electric bikes and scooters started to gain traction, but we quickly realised that while the e-bike sector was more sophisticated in its technology, the e-scooters hitting the streets were absolutely appalling.
Although they were labelled as “sustainable transport”, they were unsafe, horribly built, lasted only a few months and were all mass produced in China. Greenwashing of the century.
We challenged our team to build the world’s most sustainable, durable and comfortable e-scooter, and tested it on the streets of Tallinn, Estonia as a fleet called Tuul. The immense success of this opened our eyes, and we came to understand that we could have a huge impact by creating the world’s most sustainable and user-friendly private scooters.
Thus Äike was born to disrupt this otherwise highly greenwashed and polarizing industry by proving that safe, durable and sustainable e-scooters are indeed the most efficient personal mode of transport in cities.
More from Interviews
- Meet Erik Wikander, CEO and Co-Founder At Content Marketing Platform: Zupyak
- Monica Eaton, Founder and CEO of Chargebacks911 and Women In Tech Judge, Explains What She’s Looking for From Entrants
- Meet Owen Thompson, CEO of Cambridge Future Tech
- Investor Insights: Everything You Need To Know About Index Ventures
- Investor Insights: Everything You Need To Know About Downing Capital Group
- Meet Sheryl Cuisia, CEO and Co-Founder, The Engagement Appeal
- Investor Insights: Everything You Need To Know About Sure Valley Ventures
- Meet Lenitha Bishop, Chief Operating Officer At The DPO Centre.
How has the company evolved over the last couple of years?
We launched our first Äike e-scooter in 2021 and had our first round of extremely positive feedback, particularly for being the only e-scooter produced outside of China on the market. We had some commercial success around Europe, but understood that we could bring even more value to our products by truly understanding how to make the vehicle as user-friendly as possible.
In 2021 we embarked on a series of workshops, user interviews, comparison tests and extreme prototyping to turn the Äike e-scooter into the world’s best companion for urban commuting. Since our entire team is vertically integrated, we could tweak our prototypes at extreme speeds, making the entire process swift, painless and leaving us hungry for more.
By 2022 we completed our new and improved model, launching the Äike T in July.. With magnificent final touches from the German-Italian design studio Zanzotti, we reached the product you see today. A symbiosis of functionality, sustainability and confident riding.
Although the Äike T design is final – our innovations are everlasting. With our state-of-the-art IoT integrations, the vehicle itself will continuously improve via over-the-air firmware and software updates, with new functionalities added on a monthly basis.
What can we hope to see from Äike in the future?
We aim to become the number one LEV vehicle in the world, without compromising our values of transparency, local production, and ensuring high-quality vehicles for all riders globally.
We will start shipping the first batch of our newest model in a few months and are planning to scale largely in 2023 by selling via retail partners and expanding to more and more markets.
There really is no stopping us, we are constantly working on improving our existing vehicles, expanding our production capabilities and imagining new ways we can empower emissionless transport.