Ryd, otherwise known as Rethink Your Drive, is Vancouver’s urban transportation service with a fleet of all electric vehicles. Founded in 2017, the company is currently in the depths of near and long-term strategic planning efforts to offer a full-service re-launch in 2022. The bulk of last year was spent optimizing Ryd’s operational structure, efficiencies, and policies so they could get back to full operations in the next 12 months.
The company was founded out of the growing need for alternative and flexible parking solutions for the downtown Vancouver area. Ryd currently has five passenger vehicles that seat up to six riders per vehicle. So far, Ryd has been funded by the revenue it generates from riders, as well as investment from Ryd ownership. Soon, the company will be offering investment opportunities for a few like-minded local investors before pursuing a more formal round of seed funding.
Pre-pandemic, Ryd had a weekly average ridership of over 100 people. After pausing its services during the pandemic, partial ride service resumed during 2021 for some downtown employers and employees. Max Ault, Ryd’s CSO, shares that there is significant demand for Ryd’s services. “In the early-to-mid-summer months, inbound demand for parking solutions and associated commuter assistance from Ryd represented close to 350 individual riders – that demand was gradually put on hold with the resurgence of the two contemporary COVID variants, but we expect to see similar demand into 2022.”
Ryd is currently working on developing their official Ryd app, which provides both corporate and individual Ryd’er profiles. It is almost complete and is currently in the final stages of quality assurance and user experience testing. Although the app is not officially launched yet, Ryd will offer a limited use model free of cost for users. Currently, they offer corporate accounts and will be opening the app to individual users in the next quarter.
“As a rapidly urbanizing community, the need and demand for sustainable transportation continues to grow,” shared Ault. “The Pacific Northwest is known for its commitment to quality of life and our pristine environment. As populations continue to grow and communities continue to expand, ‘green’ transportation will need to not only keep up, but innovate the way in which we move, connect to home, work, and the places we love, and mitigate a growing environmental footprint – all while ensuring affordability and access to all.”
Looking ahead, the team at Ryd is excited about what the future holds for the company.
“In 2022, we will be adding drivers and vehicles, staying just ahead of demand,” said Casey Wyckoff, CEO and Founder of Ryd. “It’s all about meeting the needs of the people and places we serve and realizing Ryd’s greatest potential.”
One thing is certain: the team is committed to offering a unique, environmentally friendly transportation and parking alternative, which they hope, will help build a stronger and more sustainable Vancouver.
Ault said, “As we plan for 2022 and as our community and the world continues to adapt to evolved work-life paradigms, Ryd hopes to serve even more employees, residents, and visitors to Vancouver, providing an even more authentic and sustainable people-centric mobility experience investing in a cohesive, accessible, and welcoming downtown culture and atmosphere…that is uniquely Vancouver.”