How Flamingo took flight as New Zealand embraced micro-mobility

Competition from the US, then the pandemic forced the scooter start-up to move and pivot quickly.

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The ‘Tinder for food’ app wasn’t a goer, but the micro-mobility idea has proven to have legs for the founders of Flamingo Scooters Nick Hyland and Jacksen Love, who shared their story at the Hardware Meetup during Techweek the final week of July 2020.

They survived the COVID-19 lockdown then launched into a new market segment, and now they are looking towards license renewals in the three cities they operate in: Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch.

Creating a micro-mobility business

Hyland and Love met during an entrepreneurial course called Venture Up run by Creative HQ when they were teenagers. They stayed in touch, bouncing ideas around, like a food app called Crave, as they searched for a viable start-up.

A visit to San Francisco sparked the idea of bringing micro-mobility to New Zealand. But first they had to convince the local councils and the New Zealand Transport Authority (NZTA). They created a brand, developed the software, bought a scooter from Segway, fitted it out in Flamingo livery and used it to demo to council officers. They gathered a group of private investors through family and friends, poised to fund the venture once licenses were granted.

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