Cowboy raises $80m to further accelerate the adoption of cycling

Electric bike designer Cowboy today announces an $80 million Series C financing milestone. The round is led by Exor, HCVC and Siam Capital, with investments from Tiger Global, Index Ventures, Eothen, Isomer Opportunities Fund, Future Positive Capital and Triple Point Capital.

This new capital injection, bringing the total raised by Cowboy to $120 million, follows the launch of the Cowboy 4 in May 2021 which garnered record sales, a successful expansion into the Nordics and the U.S., and the recent introduction of Cowboy Care – an industry first, all-inclusive, on-demand repair and maintenance subscription service. New product, market, and service innovation embodies Cowboy’s ambition to build the complete ecosystem for urban cycling loved by its ever-growing rider community.

2021 marked a pivotal year for Cowboy, creating the foundation for rapid global growth. Some of the most notable milestones include:

- Expanding U.S. operations

- Introducing Cowboy Care, an on-demand, all-inclusive maintenance service

- Launching Cowboy app 3.0, featuring ride stats and social sharing, resulting in significant increases in cycling time and distance covered per rider

- Enhancing Cowboy Circular, enabling consumers to buy second-hand, certified refurbished Cowboy bikes.

This funding round sets Cowboy on a trajectory toward powering millions of people to move in and around cities quickly, safely and healthily as consumers look to leading an active and environmentally-conscious lifestyle.

“I’m thrilled by the renewed support of our investors which allows us to accelerate our company growth and product innovation,” shared Adrien Roose, Cowboy Co-Founder & CEO. “With this new capital, we’re bringing our industrial design and technological development in house. This will give us a further competitive edge as the most sought-after electric bike brand.”

Key initiatives and investments in 2022 and beyond will be structured around four growth themes: product design excellence, on-demand services, fitness and customer delight.

Set the indisputable design standard in urban mobility

Only three years after the launch of its first-ever model, the company has built a reputation for award-winning industrial design and superior engineering performance. Most notably, the Cowboy 4 received the prestigious “Best of the Best” Red Dot Product Design award. Its unique and intuitive ride feeling is powered by an automatic gear-free assistance, which has been praised by the press and quoted by Cowboy riders as a source of urban freedom and pure delight.

In the months and years ahead, Cowboy’s ambition is to push the e-bike engineering boundaries and to fully own the critical technologies and manufacturing processes required to further scale. Significant investments in R&D as well as growing its in-house engineering, industrial design and manufacturing capabilities will remain a central priority.

“Since day one at Cowboy, we have focused on designing the simplest, most intuitive ride feeling anyone has experienced in an electric bike,” stated Karim Slaoui, Co-Founder and VP Hardware Technologies. “Now we can go even further with the technology in the bike and how it pairs with the app for a truly seamless cycling experience for every rider.”

Keep people moving to stay active and fit

E-bikes are already the fastest-selling form of electric vehicle, well ahead of electric cars, and the market is expected to reach a size of over $50bn in just six years. As people look for a smarter means of transportation and a better choice to help combat the climate crisis, there’s also a global health crisis only worsened by the pandemic. Mental health disorders have increased, and the percentage of the overweight adult population in the U.S. reached an all-time high at 74%. Yet more and more people are making the connection between changing the way our bodies move and the positive impact it can have on our minds.

Cowboy is uniquely positioned to help tackle both the environmental and the mental and physical wellness challenge by changing the way people move in and around cities – transitioning from largely passive transportation to an active one.

World-leading studies have shown that “the potential for e-bike riders to improve cardiorespiratory fitness was similar to regular bicyclists. After a month, differences in peak oxygen consumption, blood pressure, body composition, and maximal ergometric workload were within 2% for e-bike and regular bicycle riders.”

Cowboy riders use their bike on average nine times per week, typically cycling over 4.5 km with a median caloric burn of 648 calories per week (the equivalent of 90 mn of running at moderate intensity). Since last November, the Cowboy app has offered riders to track their fitness stats, including human power and caloric burn, as well as to compare and compete with the rest of the community. 2022 will see new wellness features with the Cowboy bike becoming the go-to riding coach on the streets today.

“In just over two months' since we released the new app, our riders have cycled almost 2.5 million kilometers. They’re riding further and more often – an 8% increase in distance traveled and a 15% increase in moving time,” exclaimed Tanguy Goretti, Co-Founder & CTO. “That’s really our ambition here at Cowboy. As we look to further enhance the connected ride, we can be that everyday companion encouraging the community to ride and anticipating their needs along the way.”

Delight riders every step of the way

The Cowboy community never rides alone. They know that the company has their back at every turn, thanks to its expansive network of certified technicians who offer bike repair and maintenance at the customer’s address of choice – bookable anytime in the app. 2022 will see Cowboy further enrich the service and geographical footprint offered through Cowboy Care. Leveraging Cowboy’s technical experts already in 22 cities globally, Cowboy Care covers riders for any required service following the regular use of their bike—ranging from overall bike check-up and cleaning, to parts replacement, all the way to the free repair of a flat tire. Care is already praised by Cowboy riders scoring an incredibly high NPS of 73, a testament to service innovation and excellence.

As riders use the app to access services like this and to be guided on the road, Cowboy is hard at work to accelerate safety, navigation and personalization innovation even further:

- embedded crash and theft detection, with a 98% successful tracking and 70% retrieval rate

- 3D navigation mapping, offering real-time weather and air quality guidance

- post-ride trip analysis, with speed and elevation gain detail

- community leaderboards, including custom achievement badges

New initiatives on the horizon

As Cowboy builds upon this incredible momentum and continues to grow as a global brand through this new funding, so too will its market footprint and team, with a commitment toward sustainable operations.

U.S. expansion

With the introduction of Cowboy 4 in America, the place that inspired Cowboy’s namesake, people will soon begin to see the bike on streets all across the country. Brand acceleration is ahead, with the test ride and service network set to grow alongside the rider community.

Retail footprint

Two new retail stores will open in the first half of this year, joining the existing Brussels brand store. Berlin will open its doors in February and Paris will follow in May, offering an immersive physical retail experience.

Team growth

As a remote-first organization, Cowboy continues to attract world-class talent all over the world including New York, London, Paris and Berlin. The team will continue to grow, in particular in the design and engineering practices as well as U.S. operations.

Community

Cowboy’s loyal rider community has been a crucial part of the company’s success since day one. Building upon this strong foundation, new social features in the app will continue to be released. A second crowdfunding campaign will also launch soon, inviting the community to take part in Cowboy’s growth.

Sustainable acceleration

As Cowboy strives to become one of the leading brands accelerating the transition to decarbonized mobility, initial efforts include reaching a goal of over 50% of bike parts and components produced in Europe, thus reducing reliance on long distance freight. And, continued enhancement of the product lifecycle and Circular program, enabling different bike generations to pass from one owner to another in a simple way.

“People deserve to be able to move freely and to map their own paths in life,” Adrien affirmed. “We believe the electric bike is the way forward for people and the planet. It’s beyond exciting to have this financial commitment to investing in that future with us.”

About Cowboy

Cowboy is the connected electric bike for urban riders and continues to transform the bike and mobility industries — from point of sale to point of service. Its mission is to power riders to map their own paths, through mindful movement that benefits all. Founded in 2017 by start-up entrepreneurs Adrien Roose, Karim Slaoui and Tanguy Goretti, Cowboy is headquartered in Brussels, Belgium. Cowboy is the winner of the Eurobike 2017, the Red Dot bicycle design award 2018 and the Red Dot Best of the Best award for product design in 2019 and 2021 models. Cowboy operates in Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the U.S. with new moves on the horizon.

In this post: Cowboy

Published — Jan. 27, 2022