finance

Scottish e-bike business completes £1.85m funding round



FreeFlow Technologies (FFT), developers of the world’s lightest power to weight e-bike motor, has secured £1.85m from an oversubscribed funding round.

The new investment will support a move to a new headquarters and research and development facility in East Kilbride, as well as strengthening the team with senior technical staff and assembly engineers.

FFT’s patented transmission system is more lightweight and provides a higher power density than other products, with the motor and battery assembled into the bicycle frame rather than an attachment, as is common with current electric bikes.

The company has also developed a novel mechanical transmission system for fixed wheel bikes that allows the rider to freewheel, whilst retaining the smooth ride quality of fixed wheel.

The company claims that several brands are already working on frame designs to incorporate the new electronic transmission system into bikes for launch into the market next year.

The new funding round was led by investment syndicate Kelvin Capital and supported by Equity Gap, Foresight Williams and Scottish Enterprise. FFT raised £1.8m in an earlier funding round in October 2018.

Founded in 2012 in Glasgow by e-bike innovator Neil MacMartin, following 15 years in his family bike business, FFT is chaired by Martin McCourt, former chief executive of Dyson.

The electric bike market was worth £4.9bn in 2018 and is expected to grow to £11.8bn in 2023, according to the Confederation of the European Bike Industry and The Light Electric Vehicle Association.

McCourt said: “The e-bike market is booming as many sections of society seek alternatives to public transport and take a greater interest in their personal health – the FreeFlow drive system transforms the look and riding performance of e-bikes so they can look like a normal bike and ride like one.”

FFT managing director David Hemming added: “Before Covid hit the world the e-bike sector was forecasted to grow by double digits each year for the foreseeable future, however the global pandemic has changed the way people think about bikes across all walks of life.

“The pandemic has also accelerated the cargo/last mile delivery sector as well, with many companies looking to get deliveries from suppliers to end consumers with increased urgency and efficiency.”

John McNicol, founder and director at Kelvin Capital, commented: “FFT is a business bringing innovation to a well-established market with an impressive management team, including the ex-senior exec team of Dyson and business leadership from major cycling brands such as Cannondale, Rapha, Marin Bikes and Whyte Bikes.”



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