obike closes in Singapore: Nuts and bolts of bike-sharing deposits

Are these deposits debts or funds held in trust for users? The legal nature matters. Clearer regulation can help protect such funds in future.

No one likes to look at contracts, not even lawyers, and certainly not those who want to rent a bicycle for a quick ride. When things are going well, all that matters is that one can rent a bicycle with a push of a button. However, contracts and their terms may soon become an area of concern for the bicycle-sharing scene in Singapore.

On Monday, Singapore-based bicycle-sharing company oBike announced that it was pulling out of the Singapore market, citing new regulations imposed by the Land Transport Authority (LTA) that, in its opinion, had implications for the viability of its business model.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 29, 2018, with the headline 'Nuts and bolts of bike-sharing deposits'. Print Edition | Subscribe