BlogVélivert Becomes France's 3rd 100% Electric Bike-Sharing System!
June 7, 2023

Vélivert Becomes France's 3rd 100% Electric Bike-Sharing System!

By Fifteen
Saint-Étienne Métropole has once again placed its trust in Fifteen to transform its bike-sharing service into a fully electric fleet. But that's not all - the system is also expanding its reach. With 2.5 times more bikes and 21 serviced municipalities instead of the previous three, Saint-Étienne is taking a giant leap towards becoming the electric bike capital!

A Bike-Sharing System Supporting an Ambitious Cycling Plan

In 2019, Saint-Étienne Métropole revealed its ambitious vision through the publication of its 2019-2029 metropolitan cycling plan: tripling the number of bike trips in the area.

To realise this vision, a comprehensive set of actions has been implemented to establish a robust "bike system," including:

  • Developing a 110-kilometre cycling network by 2029
  • Collaborating with municipalities to create local bike networks with dedicated funding
  • Expanding bike parking facilities
  • Providing training and raising awareness
  • Offering bike rental services to encourage wider adoption and use
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The city's uniquely branded bike, created with the Fifteen design team.

To promote cycling among its residents, the metropolitan area has chosen electric bikes due to their numerous advantages, such as: 

  • Facilitating travel on hilly routes (Saint-Étienne is known for its seven hills!)
  • Enabling long-distance biking trips
  • Extending bike services to peripheral areas, thus spreading cycling culture beyond the city centre

Vélivert, which was launched in 2010 as a fully mechanical system, responded to the growing demand in 2017 by considering the transition to electric bikes. Now, starting from June 1, 2023, Vélivert is officially an electric bike-sharing system. It is integrated into the "Moovizy" application, part of the Maas (Mobility as a Service) platform, which showcases Vélivert alongside other transportation options.

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Vélivert: Transitioning to Electric and Expanding Operations

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The user application, developed by Fifteen

In summary, Vélivert’s transformation:

  • 1,050 electric bikes (compared to the previous 400 mechanical bikes)
  • 105 stations (compared to the previous 30 stations)
  • Covering 21 municipalities (compared to the previous three)

Enhanced User Experience with Electric Bicycles

Aside from providing excellent maneuverability and comfort for users, the Fifteen Fusion bike boasts an impressive range of up to 65 kilometers. It is equipped with a 5-liter basket and features a triple anti-theft and anti-vandalism system, which includes an alarm, GPS tracker, and wheel lock.

The traditional gear system has been replaced by a torque sensor located in the pedal, automatically adjusting the level of electric assistance based on the user's needs - simply pedal and enjoy the ride!

Each bike can be unlocked using the city's public transportation pass, the OùRA! - STAS card, thanks to the RFID technology integrated into the bike frame. For occasional users, the "Vélivert" mobile application developed by Fifteen simplifies the bike pickup process.

The World’s Most Compact BIke Station

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The world's most compact bike station

The stations are designed to be ultra-compact, lightweight, and easy to install, accommodating up to 10 bikes within a single parking space. Thanks to Fifteen's patented technology, the bikes recharge in series using electromagnets. Consequently, each station requires only a single electrical connection, resulting in lightweight and easy-to-install stations.

The metropolitan area plans to take advantage of the ease of station installation by creating temporary stations:

  • Near popular swimming areas during the summer
  • At cultural events in the city throughout the year.

Software with Great Data Insights

The bikes will continuously provide data, which will be organised into an actionable dashboard provided by Fifteen's analytics software, Fifteen Analytics. This software will offer standard indicators such as the number of trips, number of subscribers, duration and length of trips, and more. Additionally, it will provide advanced indicators, including:

  • An interactive map displaying all cyclists' routes to add new stations or construct new bike lanes.
  • User data, such as age, frequency of usage per week, and geographical origin, to facilitate effective communication.
  • Analysis of road quality and high-risk areas based on braking data collected during trips.

Vélivert : Effective Marketing

Amazing Pricing

The pricing structure remains unchanged with the transition to electric bikes, offering highly appealing subscription rates with the primary objective of converting the population

Standard subscription rate: 30 euros per year; Annual STAS public transportation subscriber rate: 10 euros per year.

This pricing encourages intermodality, as for just 10 euros per year, individuals can complement their public transportation journeys with bike rides for added convenience and speed. It's a way to persuade a portion of the population to embrace public transportation.

Successful Promotion of the Launch 

The metropolitan area invested considerable effort into ensuring a successful launch by implementing pre-launch communication strategies that have firmly established Vélivert in the minds of all the residents.

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Teasing the arrival of the new service on social networks
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3 examples of street marketing used to announce the arrival of the new service

These communication efforts will continue with the aim of engaging as many residents and tourists as possible in the Vélivert adventure!

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