Riide Simplifies City Commutes with an Innovative Electric Bike

January 21, 2014

9:00 am

Living in an urban area provides any number of opportunities for work and play, which is a big reason people flock to cities. However, large volumes of people coexisting so closely together naturally has some downsides–nightmarish commutes and increased pollution being among them. Thankfully, two local DC entrepreneurs have introduced an innovative solution.

Riide was founded by Jeff Stefanis and Amber Wason (Georgetown and GWU alums, respectively). Their product is a lightweight, battery-powered electric bike that weighs in at only 35lbs. It can be peddled like a regular bike or revved up with a twist of the throttle to cruise along at 20mph. Owning one would only set you back $1799 with virtually no maintenance (compared to cars which can rack up thousands of dollars in maintenance per year). If your Riide does need a repair, it can be taken to any regular bike shop.

The last several years have seen a decline in car ownership and miles driven by car owners. More young people are wanting to live in urban areas and don’t see a car as a necessary part of city life. I’m going to go out on a limb here and guess that it’s no coincidence that Riide first came to life in DC, the city with the worst traffic congestion in the country.

Of course there are several other alternatives to car ownership, but they all have their faults. Public transportation is probably the most popular, but it can be unpredictable. Some people prefer scooters, but they’re heavy, expensive (compared to a bike), require gas, and need to be parked on the street or in a garage. Then there are traditional bikes, which are really only options for those with a short commute who don’t mind showing up to work sweaty and out of breath.

Riide seems to have found a perfect middle ground for environmentally conscious commuters who appreciate the freedom of having an affordable and reliable mode of transportation that they can store in their apartment if need be.

Riide has already surpassed its Kickstarter goal of $50,000, and they’ve only just begun.

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Kristin is an aspiring entrepreneur who is enthusiastically navigating her way through the DC startup space. She has an unending passion for learning and is never satisfied with the status quo. During the day she is an ops, biz dev, and marketing maven for Fission Strategy

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