EV sharing program Bird Canada picks up MKB-led funding

Toronto-based Bird Canada, operator of an electric-vehicle sharing program, has secured additional venture capital financing to support its growth.

Toronto-based Bird Canada, operator of an electric-vehicle sharing program, has secured additional venture capital financing to support its growth. No financial terms were disclosed. The round was led by MKB, with participation from existing investors Obelysk, Relay Ventures and Alate Partners.

PRESS RELEASE

TORONTO & CALGARY, Alberta–(BUSINESS WIRE)–With the rapid growth of shared e-scooter programs across the country, Bird Canada today announced that it reached the 1M ride milestone ahead of its second anniversary. Bird Canada currently operates in six Canadian towns/cities – four in Alberta: Calgary, Edmonton, Okotoks, and Red Deer; and two in Ontario: Ottawa and Windsor – and continues to expand into new markets each year. In addition to the 1M ride milestone, Bird Canada has already more than doubled its ridership this scooting season compared to 2020. Later this summer, Bird Canada will see its shared e-bike program take flight in Windsor.

To support its continued growth, Bird Canada has closed an additional round of funding led by new investor MKB, a Montreal-based private investment firm focused on next generation energy and transportation companies, with participation from existing investors Obelysk, Relay Ventures, and Alate Partners. Bird Canada will use the funds to expand into additional markets, extend its reach to new cities, double the size of its team, and acquire more e-scooters and e-bikes to support its growth.

“This fresh injection of capital will enable us to bring our industry-leading, safe, and sustainable operations to more cities across Canada, and at the same time ensure we continue to meet the needs of the cities in which we operate,” said Stewart Lyons, CEO of Bird Canada. “We’re proud to add a Quebec-based fund to our roster of investors, especially as we work to add cities in the province to the growing number of Bird Canada municipal partners across the country.”

MKB brings a focus on sustainability and transportation to Bird Canada, along with a leadership team with extensive experience in both these markets. “While we drew considerable interest from potential investors for this funding round, there was strategic alignment with MKB. They will provide us with invaluable support as we execute on our growth objectives,” said Lyons.

“Many larger cities and smaller towns across Canada are taking the important step of evaluating the benefits of shared e-scooter programs as an alternative, urban mobility option,” said Antonio Occhionero, partner at MKB. “As a Canadian-owned and operated company, Bird Canada not only understands the needs of these markets but is also locally-minded and measured in the approach it takes to introducing micromobility to residents and visitors.” Concurrent with the funding round, Occhionero will be joining the Bird Canada Board of Directors.

“Bird Canada has very quickly established itself as the number one choice for Canadian cities planning to deploy shared e-scooters and e-bikes as the company is not only focused on developing long-term relationships with cities, but also consistently puts the people it serves first by prioritizing safety,” said John Bitove, Chairman of Bird Canada and founder of private investment company Obelysk.

“We have had a front row seat to the rapidly growing mobility market, which has experienced explosive growth both before and during the pandemic,” said Kevin Talbot, Managing Partner at Relay Ventures. “Bird Canada exceeded the initial targets it set out when it launched two years ago and is now very well positioned to expand its reach to other Canadian markets.”

About Bird Canada
Powered by Bird, Bird Canada Inc. operates an electric vehicle sharing program. Bird Canada is a Canadian-owned and operated company that offers Canadians, and visitors to Canada, a new way to avoid congestion and get around that is affordable and uses the latest and most innovative last-mile mobility solutions for urban areas. For additional information, visit Bird online, on Twitter, and on Instagram.