The Hopp story begins in 2019 when a small software development studio interested in micro mobility launched an app in the capital of Iceland, Reykjavik. They felt that because of its relatively small size the city was being overlooked by other micro mobility players
The service started off with 65 electric scooters. The type of scooters that are now very much a part of many urban landscapes and which have now been turned into a franchise too. Today it has 3,000 such electric scooters in Reykjavik alone. It now has 35 branches world wide
The first franchise outside of Iceland was in Orihuela Costa in Spain which opened in the summer of 2020. The company is expanding to other markets and estimates that the micro mobility market globally will be worth 500 billion USD by 2031.
The company is concentrating on the market of towns and cities with between 20,000 and 150,000 inhabitants. These are places where there is less competition or none at all and moreover where public transport is weaker than in the big cities.
Getting the technology right
Hopp set out to make software that could analyze demand, manage staff shifts, offer automatic accounting and more. Once the software was automated they became convinced that it could be replicated in other locations.
The app the company runs has received acclaim from consumers and managers alike.The electric scooters it uses have been tried and tested in a variety of conditions. Iceland was a tough place to start in terms of climate, but that meant that the technology got tested in hard rather than easy conditions. The scooters have now traveled over 10 million km all over the globe.
The company emphasizes that it is looking for people who share its “core values” and have a “deep passion” for micro mobility and protection of the environment. It wants people with “the capacity to think originally who aren’t afraid to think outside the box.” But Hopp admits that it is looking for people with business experience.
Financial support for franchisees an important draw
Hopp offers up to 80% financing for its chosen franchisees from “StartHoppTM”.That available financing means that the initial outlay for potential franchisees is modest. That in turn means that the franchisee can activate their business in a matter of weeks. But equally important is that Hopp offers a tried and tested system with help from those who are specialized in it. Help with branding, marketing and IT is always at hand.
But the franchise is also for those who want a business that is visible and which makes a difference in the city it operates in. Hopp points to the fact that most car journeys made are of less than 8 km in terms of distance. This means that there is a transit need, public transportation is not fulfilling and micro mobility can, thereby making lives easier. A company which does that is going to achieve visibility.
Hopp’s initial franchising fee is 5,000 USD and the minimum investment is 25,000 USD in a minimum 52 electric scooters. The monthly fee is calculated as 18% of net earnings.On the upside the average monthly profit on a fleet of 100 scooters is between 7,000 and 15,000 Euros net. Much depends on the size of the urban area, the lifestyle of the inhabitants and the availability of large workplaces and colleges.
The franchise takes care of ordering the equipment for the franchisee. The scooters are waterproof, burglar proof with batteries that have a reach of 50 km and are exchangeable so that there is no need to pull the scooters into a garage for charging.
It is the franchisee’s responsibility to take care of the scooters and their location. The app system helps by informing where the scooters are usually left. The franchisee is also responsible for local marketing in social media and entering into deals with other companies for events and travel to work.
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