Italian mobility-as-a-service startup Scuter has successfully closed a seed investment of over €3 million, a record amount for a hardware-based tech startup in the pre-revenue phase in Italy.
Founded in Rome in 2015, Scuter was launched with a vision to design a solution based on an innovative electric smart ride-on scooter designed just for sharing. In creating a vehicle that is efficient, connected, safe, and eco-friendly, Scuter is specially designed for car drivers to make the driving experience more comfortable and safe and give transportation a whole new dimension.
Scuter was co-founded by CEO Gianmarco Carnovale, a serial tech entrepreneur and startup ecosystem builder in Rome, CBDO Gabriele Carbucicchio, an automotive entrepreneur, CDO Carmine Di Nuzzo, a vehicle designer and CTO Luca Ruggeri, an electronic engineer.
The co-founders wanted to create a transport option that would be easy to ride and long-lasting like a bike, agile and fast like a scooter, and safe like a city car. By doing so, they wanted to integrate the benefits of different transport methods and develop a new sustainable urban mobility service for the modern city.
Urban mobility is a booming trend at the moment throughout Europe, but, it is currently dominated by bikes, scooters and rideshares. Scuter plans to offer a fleet of innovative, safe and sustainable vehicles with low maintenance costs and are accessible to all.
Scuter raised initial pre-seed funding of €600k from friends and family, business angels, and through crowdfunding platform Mamacrowd. They also received a grant in the INCENSE contest run by the European Commission with ENEL, as recognition of being one of Europe’s most promising cleantech startups. Scuter then were able to develop and road-test four prototypes, achieve patents and an agreement to make the vehicle valid for licence plating throughout Europe.
Scuter’s system is composed of a cloud platform that is driven by machine learning and AI, a smartphone app, a battery charging cabinet, and, a patented single-seat electric 3-wheeled vehicle. A truly unique innovation.
The vehicle, described by Scuter as ‘a smartphone with wheels and a chair’ is homologated for a helmetless drive and it runs on environmentally friendly green electricity. The batteries are swappable so there is no time wasted waiting for it to charge. The app will allow users to find their closest vehicle and park it with an interactive map.
The whole architecture and design of the product will be continually reviewed and reengineered, to improve efficiency and add features – continually improving user experience and customizing the service, with the end result of reducing the number of cars in European cities.
The €3 million funding has come from a mixture of sources, including a convertible investment led by LVenture Group and other Business Angels in co-matching with CDP Venture Capital, medium-term debt financing bounded to the production of the first fleet of vehicles from Intesa Sanpaolo Bank, plus a grant by the government’s agency INVITALIA.
Funding will enable the company to continue developing its product, with an aim to be ready for Series A funding early in 2022.