Briefing

Lime laying off about 100 and pulling out of 12 cities; Canadian expansion unaffected

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Chris Schafer, head of Lime’s Canadian operations, said no employees in the country are losing their jobs, and the firm’s plans to launch in more Canadian cities remain unaffected. (The Logic)

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Talking point: The e-scooter startup’s layoffs, first reported by Axios, will affect about 14 per cent of its workforce and are part of an attempt to become profitable. Lime is facing significant pressure from Bird, which recently raised US$275 million and is looking to expand to at least 11 Canadian cities. The Ontario government recently announced cities could permit e-scooters on their roads, and Lime and Bird are jockeying with firms like Uber subsidiary Jump for access to the lucrative Toronto market. Other major Canadian cities, including Ottawa, Waterloo, Victoria and Windsor, have also signalled interest in expanded e-scooter access. Lime is looking to hit profitability this year; its eliminated markets all had weaker pickup. It’s not the only e-scooter firm hit by layoffs recently, but its cuts are the deepest. Lyft’s e-scooter unit laid off 20 in November 2019, and Bird eliminated less than two dozen in December.