RaC Rides | Rent A Cycle: Peddling to Success through Unique Business Models

Varun Singh,Co-Founder

Varun Singh


The trend of cycling for fitness has been growing steadily across India over the past few years. What used to be a quintessential childhood activity has today transformed into a full-fledged sport that requires high quality gear. While everyone enjoys the rush of peddling away on a balmy Sunday morning, very few have the time and resources to purchase and maintain a high-end cycle. Solving this predicament is Mumbai headquartered RaC Rides. Founded by a trio of fitness enthusiasts, RaC Rides renders the best quality bicycles through easy to use rental options to users.

"Most people who purchase a bicycle use it for a few months and then forget about it. Because of not being used regularly, the bicycle needs repairs in order to be used again. It also does not provide the same riding quality as before," explains Varun Singh, Co-Founder, RaC Rides. Solving these challenges through the renting model, the company focuses on a regular upkeep of all its bicycles and ensures that users can enjoy the same riding experience every time.

Organic Genesis
A young Varun had moved to Mumbai to pursue his Master's degree where he was living with his school mate and football buddy, Pulak Mehan who is also the co-founder and core management of RaC Rides now. One rainy day, the duo planned to get a taste of Mumbai monsoons by going for
cycle ride, for which Varun had to hunt for a bicycle to rent. This experience introduced him to the inefficiencies that were a part of the bicycle renting business. The idea struck and they began small, by listing their personal bicycle on popular listing pages. The positive response gave them the confidence in the viability of the bicycle renting model in India and thus RaC Rides was born in 2017.

Originating in Mumbai, RaC Rides has now expanded to Gurgaon, Lucknow and Indore and is working towards adding major metropolitan cities such as Pune, Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad in its ambit. While the company had been experiencing consistent growth, the Covid 19 scenario has helped the team push their numbers much higher. The company registered a 3x revenue growth, 6x growth in terms of renting hours and 500 percent increase in number of online users in 2020. The young firm has tied up with various fitness cafes that have been acting as warehouses for RaC Rides. "Since the footfalls at these cafes have dropped owing to the pandemic, we found that synergy with cafes; we don't pay them rentals but help them increase footfalls," adds Varun.

RaC Rides team works well together and has developed a high trust environment that allows each member to thrive professionally along with the company's growth

Recipe for Success
Leveraging a first mover advantage, RaC Rides | Rent A Cycle ( secured a highly coveted domain name. The easy to search name has helped the company grow organically and has brought scores of customers without any marketing investments. In a bid to strengthen its relationship with customers, the company is working on a unique hybrid model. "A customer's relationship with a renting company is very short lived; especially if they go on to buy the product. We are working on creating a model where the customer can rent a cycle, use it for some time and if they like it, they can purchase it from us," explains Varun.

The cross functional RaC Rides team works well together and has developed a high trust environment that allows each member to thrive professionally along with the company's growth. The team is now working on ramping up its technical abilities and is designing a mobile application that will work on a subscription model. Working in tandem with one of the IITs, RaC Rides is working on automating various steps of the process such as QR and GPS enabled locking systems.