Bike Sharing Makes Chinese Exports Cool For The First Time Since Marco Polo

Despite being an export powerhouse, Chinese products have largely been run-of-the-mill stuff like cloth, shoes and toys. Change is on its way, however, and it’s coming on two wheels in the form of bike sharing.

With Mobike’s announced launch of bike sharing services in Florence and Milan, the Chinese bike sharing boom has now spread to Italy, the United Kingdom, Singapore and Japan. More European cities will soon be on board, likely followed by U.S. urban centers. Close behind is rival Ofo, which aims to be in 20 countries by the end of this year.

Bike sharing – a misnomer they are really bike rental services – is perhaps the first cool Chinese export since the time of Marco Polo. Just look at the mayor of Florence smile as he rides an orange Mobike earlier this week. For the first time in 300 years, Europeans are learni...

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