Bolt offers vehicle for hire, micromobility, car-sharing, and food delivery services. Bolt is headquartered in Tallinn, Estonia and operates in over 200 cities in 40 countries in Europe, Africa, Western Asia and Latin America. The company has 50 million customers globally and more than 1.5 million drivers use Bolt platform to offer rides.
Bolt (then called Taxify) was founded by Markus Villig (then only 19 years old, a high-school student) in 2013, with a vision to aggregate all Tallinn and Riga taxis into one platform. With €5,000 from his parents, who also helped him by doing customer support outside of their regular working hours, he hired a developer to help him launch the business, then called mTakso. The service was launched in August 2013 and in 2014 it went on to foreign shores.
In 2017, Taxify launched its services in London by acquiring a local taxi company with a licence to operate, but was forced by Transport for London to shut down its services. The company has filed a new licence application and relaunched in London in June 2019.
Following the setback in London, Taxify launched its services in Paris and Lisbon.
In September 2018, the company announced expanding into dockless electric scooters and launched them in Paris under the new Bolt brand. The company also said it planned to release scooters in several other European and Australian cities where the app was already established, but would also launch in new markets where vehicle for hire services face significant regulatory roadblocks, including Germany and Spain.
In June 2019, Bolt re-launched in London with 20,000 drivers registered on the platform.
In August 2019, the company rolled out its food delivery service, Bolt Food. Bolt Food launched in Tallinn, with the plans to expand to more cities in Europe and Africa later this year.
In September 2019, Bolt announced its “Green Plan”, an initiative to reduce the ecological footprint of the transportation industry and Bolt as a company. The Green Plan goals include offsetting Bolt’s contribution to the CO₂ emissions of the European transportation sector by at least 5 million tonnes by 2025 and adding more green ride-types for passengers to choose from.
In March 2019 and 2020, Bolt was ranked third in the FT 1000: Europe’s Fastest Growing Companies published by the Financial Times
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