Estonian startup Vok Bikes has secured €3.8M to fuel the expansion of its electric cargo bike fleets across Europe. The seed round was led SmartCap, Jaan Tallinn’s Metaplanet, Specialist VC, Sunly, and a group of angel investors. In addition, the company received a €300,000 grant from Enterprise Estonia.
Vok Bikes, based in Tallinn, designs and manufactures electric bicycles, aiming to transform urban commuting and provide a sustainable transportation solution. Founded by three ex-student formula engineers, Vok is now a team of 30 people. It has brought electric cargo bikes to London, Stockholm, Tallinn, Vilnius, Antwerp, Copenhagen, Geneva and Kiel.
The funding will enable Vok Bikes to accelerate its expansion, as the company plans to release an additional 1,000 cargo bikes across Europe in the next year. They are designed to meet the growing demand for eco-friendly transportation solutions. As local governments in Europe strive for carbon neutrality and implement measures to promote sustainability, businesses in various industries are adopting cargo bikes for delivery and transportation needs.
Taking the lead in smart mobility
Estonia is well ahead of the pack in terms of smart last-mile mobility solutions, as cyber-couriers from companies like Starship Technologies and Clevon are already cruising the sidewalks of its cities, from Tallinn to Viljandi. Now its entrepreneurs are ready to seize one more opportunity. “It’s a perfect time to go to market because we don’t have an established market leader,” Vok Bikes’ CEO Indrek Petjärv told Tech.eu.
The electric cargo bike market in Europe is experiencing steady growth and is already valued at over €1.2 billion. The potential is tied to both private and business usage. In 2022, the B2B cargo bike market grew by more than 100%, and Germany alone released 200,000 cargo bikes to the market. Vok Bikes’ innovative bikes offer several advantages over cars, including significantly lower CO2 emissions, lower operating costs, and faster urban travel times.
Vok Bikes has already established partnerships with well-known companies such as Wolt, Donkey Republic, Mathem, Foodora, and Estonia’s postal service Omniva. Its cargo bikes have gained a reputation for reliability and operational efficiency. Recently, the company introduced a new model in the UK, offering five times the cargo space, which attracted multinational freight companies and large-scale e-commerce businesses.
What sets Vok Bikes apart from its competitors is its focus on custom developments. While other companies often use off-the-shelf parts, Vok Bikes heavily invests in customizing various aspects of its bikes, from batteries to the brake system. This approach has enabled the company to reduce the total cost of ownership and maintenance intervals, making its bikes more cost-effective and practical for users.
In terms of safety, Vok Bikes stands out in the market too. The company’s cargo bikes are equipped with unique electronic driving aids and advanced features such as an ABS braking system and traction control. This ensures the safety of couriers and riders, addressing the growing concern for safety in the micro-mobility sector.
The investment from SmartCap Green Fund, which focuses on environmentally friendly startups, was made possible by the resources of the European Union’s recovery plan, NextGenerationEU. Until 2026, through funds and direct investments of SmartCap’s Green Fund, €100M will be offered to improve the financing opportunities of Estonian GreenTech companies.
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