Rival e-bike brands find creative solutions for nearly bankrupt VanMoof’s e-bikes

VanMoof’s current financial woes can ironically be traced back to the company’s forward-thinking and innovative designs. But now that the future of these costly and complicated e-bikes is uncertain while the brand teeters on the edge of bankruptcy, other e-bike companies are coming up with equally innovative solutions for them.

We reported earlier this week that VanMoof, a leading Dutch e-bike maker, had stopped taking orders on its site. At the time, the company put up a facade that all was well and that the pause in orders was simply to catch up with demand.

But the proverbial wheels fell off the e-bike later in the week when we learned that VanMoof applied for and received a postponement of payment from a Dutch court and was temporarily closing its stores in Europe.

The move doesn’t mean that the company is currently bankrupt and, in fact, is a strategy designed to prevent a looming bankruptcy. But in practice, many companies that reach this stage never find the funding necessary to remain afloat and ultimately are forced to declare bankruptcy.

That could be a disaster for the thousands and thousands of VanMoof customers who rely on the company to keep their high-tech electric bikes working.

Now other rival e-bike companies have stepped up with creative solutions.

Blurby’s e-bikes look a bit more traditional than VanMoof’s, but maybe that’s a good thing under the present circumstances.

Blurby Bike, makers of the self-proclaimed “lightest e-bike made in the EU,” are offering VanMoof riders up to 1,000 euros of trade-in value for their e-bikes when buying a new Blurby e-bike.

With Blurby’s models priced between €1,899 and €2,499, that’s a pretty sizable chunk off the purchase price.

The company explained to Electrek that they hope to be able to stockpile enough VanMoof bikes to service those still on the road.

Cowboy was ready to step in and help out VanMoof riders.

Another VanMoof rival, Belgian-based Cowboy, has come up with a clever solution to helping VanMoof riders continue to unlock their e-bikes even without a functioning smartphone app.

Currently, VanMoof bikes require owners to unlock their bikes either directly from the app or with a digital key, which is created by the app. Cowboy created an app that allows VanMoof owners to generate and save their own digital key, which can be used in place of one created by a VanMoof server.

Riders will need to grab the app now, though, since it requires an initial connection to the VanMoof server to fetch their current keycode. If the server goes offline, existing Bikey App users can continue to unlock their bikes, but it will no longer be possible for new users to activate them.

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