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Dubai company’s EVs aim to deliver ‘last mile’ in 100 cities

One Moto founder Adam Ridgway says the shift to EVs will help delivery drivers who often have to pay for their own fuel One Moto
One Moto founder Adam Ridgway says the shift to EVs will help delivery drivers who often have to pay for their own fuel
  • One Moto already in 9 countries
  • In talks to launch in 27 more
  • Plans 10,000 vehicles in UAE next year

Dubai company One Moto, which aims to decarbonise “last mile” deliveries using electric vehicles, has said it plans to serve 100 cities by 2028.

After launching the company in the UAE, serial entrepreneur Adam Ridgway has gained a foothold in the UK, Bahrain, Jordan, Sri Lanka, Chile, Iraq, Nepal and Ethiopia. It is in talks to launch in 27 more countries.

In addition to manufacturing and supplying electric vehicles, One Moto offers ancillary services including battery swaps and an AI-backed cloud system to optimise fleet and rider management.

As the first two-wheeled EV company in the region, it helped to write the legislation with the Road and Transport Authority and Emirates Authority for Standardisation and Metrology, leading to a launch in 2020. 

The company secured $40 million in financing in July. This will enable it to deploy 10,000 vehicles in the UAE by next year. Talabat, InstaShop, Carrefour and Majid Al Futtaim are among its customers in the Emirates.

It also launched the Smart Mobility and Innovation Centre in Dubai last year in cooperation with the Rochester Institute of Technology.

This R&D academy has led to the design and development of three EVs, which are set to be built in the UAE later this year.

Ridgway’s ambitions are global, however, and he spoke to AGBI during a trip to Europe as One Moto looks to expand its UK operation and seeks new partners in mainland Europe.

“We are certain to have a presence in 100 cities by 2028,” he said. “In order to expedite our growth, we are in talks with selected investors.

“We are raising very differently from other EV companies. We have built the vehicles, gained market share and won awards.

“We generated revenue, secured international expansion and now we raise what we need to take us to the next series of milestones.”

He doesn’t believe in “overzealous valuations” that cannot be backed up by fact, he added. 

Ridgway’s idea for One Moto was formed in 2016 when he saw rows of old, delivery motorcycles outside a car workshop and wondered if anyone was producing EV versions.

Eighteen months later, the company had motorbikes certified, registered and on the roads of the UAE. 

A One Moto electric scooter

Ridgway said: “In our first two years of operation, very few customers had an ESG mandate. There was always a question of want versus need. However, as we approached 2023 there were more internal champions within organisations to want to bring change. This led to enquiries.”

He insisted the future of last mile deliveries is electric, pointing out that most delivery riders are expected to pay for their own fuel. This makes up about 29 percent of their gross annual salary. He described the situation as “alarming” and a “tremendous concern” for workers in the gig economy.

The CEO also said the company’s $40 million boost enables it to help finance the transition of customers’ fleets to electric vehicles.

“We’ve removed the capital expenditure consideration. Fleet operators can own their EV fleet under operating expenditure financed by us. This is another industry first.” he said.