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FoundedPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania (2007)
Key people
Timothy Ericson (CEO & Co-founder)[1]
Jason Meinzer (Co-founder)

Zagster is a venture-funded startup company based in Cambridge, Massachusetts that designs, builds and operates bike sharing programs for cities, universities, corporate campuses, hotels, and residential communities across the United States. Zagster currently operates over 100 bike sharing programs including systems for Cornell University, Yale University, Salem, MA,[2] Cleveland, Ohio, Quicken Loans, Hyatt, General Motors, The Related Companies, Irvine Company and Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts.[3][4][5][6]


Zagster was founded in 2007 by Drexel University graduates Timothy Ericson and Jason Meinzer as "CityRyde". CityRyde initially sought to operate a bike-sharing program in the Philadelphia region, but later established itself as a software provider and consultant in the industry.[7]

In September 2009, CityRyde launched Spark, the world’s first off-the-shelf bike-sharing fleet management software, at the University of Chicago. Spark's features include electronic user registration, automated rental processes, integration with automated locking mechanisms, a customized reporting dashboard, and the ability to integrate with existing systems. Spark was implemented at 10 universities, including the University of Chicago, Cornell University, University of Colorado at Boulder and Drexel University.

In 2012 CityRyde was renamed Zagster and moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts to join the TechStars startup accelerator program.[8] Zagster was also selected as a finalist for the MassChallenge startup competition in 2012.[9] The company raised a $1M funding round in fall 2012 led by LaunchCapital, which also included Fontinalis Partners, Jean Hammond, John Landry, and Semyon Dukach.[10][11] In July 2015, Zagster raised $3.5 million in a Series A funding round led by LaunchCapital and Fontinalis Partners.[12]

Zagster launched bike sharing programs for General Motors, Duke University, and Cleveland, Ohio in the summer of 2014. In 2015, the company launched bike sharing programs for Workday, Inc., Intuitive Surgical, Purdue University, and Samsung in California.

Zagster bike sharing station
A Zagster bike sharing station

On December 12, 2018, Zagster began operating under the name "Pace" in the city of Santa Clarita, CA.

Technology & operating model[edit]

Zagster builds and operates bike sharing programs as a service. The company provides its customers with bike sharing infrastructure and technology as well as design, implementation and operation services. Zagster employs local maintenance staff to service and operate its bike sharing systems including performing repairs and system rebalancing.

Bikes are secured through an electronic lock that is unlocked through the use of an iOS or Android mobile application or text message sent to a Zagster operated SMS service.[13] Because the locking system is completely self-contained on the bicycle, riders are able to make 'stopovers', securing the Zagster bicycle temporarily at any location during their trip.

Zagster bike
Zagster bike on a 'stopover' trip
Manhattan station

Zagster's model of "bike share as a service" allows the company to operate its business model differently from other bike sharing companies. In municipal installations, the company has used a consortium of local sponsors to provide a much larger network than would have been possible if the city needed to pay for the full cost of the infrastructure.[14][15] Because Zagster does not require customers to purchase equipment, it is able to pilot bike sharing programs and scale them rapidly to meet ridership needs. Zagster replaces all bikes in its bike sharing programs every three years and donates the refurbished bikes locally.[16]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Zagster - Our Company".
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Riders - Zagster". Zagster. Retrieved 2015-10-17.
  4. ^ Moschen, Isabella (June 6, 2013). "The Two-Wheeled Amenity". New York Times.
  5. ^ Gallagher, John (July 24, 2013). "Dan Gilbert brings bike sharing to Motor City for his employees". Detroit Free Press.
  6. ^ "Yale Bikeshare".
  7. ^ All for Profit and Profiting for All |
  8. ^ Meet the 13 New TechStars Boston Startups | Xconomy
  9. ^ "MassChallenge 2012 Finalists".
  10. ^ Alspach, Kyle (October 18, 2012). "Zagster raises $1M to take bike-sharing service nationwide".
  11. ^ Zagster | LaunchCapital
  12. ^ "Zagster | CrunchBase". Retrieved 2015-10-18.
  13. ^ "App - Zagster". Retrieved 2015-10-17.
  14. ^ "Albuquerque - Zagster Bike Share". Retrieved 2015-10-17.
  15. ^ "Bike Share". Downtown Albuquerque MainStreet. Retrieved 2015-10-17.
  16. ^ "Zagster Just Gave 36 Local Teens an Awesome Gift". Boston Magazine. Retrieved 2015-10-17.

External links[edit]