EDINBURGH online bike retailer One Spoke is marking World Bicycle Day with an exclusive new partnership hoped to protect bikes from theft.
Set to take place on Friday June 3rd, the annual celebration for cycling fans will also see the wheels spinning on a working relationship between two companies in the field.
Online hub One Spoke and bike registration system Veloeye will now ride in tandem with the aim of bolstering both their services and safeguarding cyclists’ property.
One Spoke, which was founded in November last year, gives users the opportunity to buy and sell bikes on the internet.
Launched in response to the popularity boom enjoyed by cycling during lockdowns, the hub hosts new and used road, mountain, gravel and hybrid bikes.
Having previously worked together on ventures such as a music app, One Spoke founders Karim Abbassi-Khalili and Mehdi Lachhab decided to act on their love of cycling.
Lachab said: “From our own experience and market research, we found that environmentally-conscious consumers taking up cycling for the first time in lockdown were more likely to want to purchase a pre-loved bike as opposed to new – it costs less and it is the more sustainable option.
“However, given the shocking number of bike thefts that occur in the UK every day, there was nothing to give consumers peace of mind about the legitimacy of their second-hand purchase.”
Figures from Cycling Scotland find that there was a 52% increase in the number of people cycling between March 2021 and March 2020.
These figures are expected to drop as life becomes more normal, with The Guardian reporting that new cyclists who are used to empty roads are scared of busy traffic.
While still representing an overall increase in cyclists since before the pandemic, there are also concerns about a rise in bike theft.
Voleye allows owners to register their bike using a QR code or their smartphone, verifying that is not stolen and deterring potential thieves.
Matthew Rice, Veloeye co-director, said: “Of the 650,000 bikes that are stolen across the UK each year, only 5% are reunited with their owner.
“The benefits of Veloeye are twofold – firstly, victims of bike theft are maximising their chances of seeing their bike returned.
“And secondly, buyers of second-hand bikes can rest easy knowing they are not handling stolen goods. By partnering with One Spoke we aim to make it safer to buy a used bike in the UK.”
One Spoke’s base of Edinburgh has been hit hard by cycling crimes recently, with over a third of Scotland’s 5,470 bike thefts in 2020/21 committed in the capital.
Abbassi-Khalili added: “Thanks to our exclusive partnership with Veloeye, buyers can have greater confidence in the authenticity and origin of every pre-loved bike listed on our site – on World Bike Day and beyond.”