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The trend for mobility startups continues as ParkBee has secured €1.8 million in funding. The investment comes from four informal investors and from InnovationQuarter, the regional development agency for the province of South Holland. ParkBee provides an innovative parking solution that makes unused parking spaces in office buildings available to the public. In doing so it works together with parking apps Parkmobile and Park-line.
Official announcement at the brand new CIC Rotterdam
In the above photo we see Maarten Struijvenberg, Rotterdam’s alderman for Employment and Economy, handing over a plaque with the investors’ names on it to ParkBee’s founder and CTO Jian Jiang and Commercial Director Wouter de Bruijne during the official announcement of the investment. This took place on Tuesday the 25th of October in InnovationQuarter’s second office, which is housed in the recently opened Rotterdam division of the prestigious CIC Cambridge Innovation Center. For InnovationQuarter this is already their tenth investment in a local startup this year.
South Holland Connections
ParkBee is an alumni from tech incubator YES!Delft, and the company also participated in South Holland’s Climate-KIC cleantech accelerator program. ParkBee is also supported by the ESA Business Incubation Centre in Noordwijk. Despite of all these connections to the southern lowlands, the company recently moved its office to Amsterdam in order to be closer to its partner Parkmobile. The startup wil keep a connection with the province of South Holland as ParkBee’s R&D department will be located in Rotterdam.
ParkBee was founded in the Netherlands in 2014 by expats Jian Jiang (China) and Tom Buchmann (UK). The duo launched their startup in October 2015, and since then already 34 company car parks with a total of 1,800 parking spaces have signed up to their network. While office parking spaces are often only used from 9 to 5, ParkBee’s technology lets people access these locations via parking apps Parkmobile and Park-line. ParkBee aims to use the money to accelerate its international expansion, specifically in the UK as the company recently opened its first office outside of the Netherlands in London: “ParkBee’s technology makes it simple to operate in other countries,” explains Buchmann. He adds, “Our technology is easy to integrate, and we have a good network in the property sector that provides us with parking spaces. Our growth in the Netherlands has shown what we can achieve.”
New source of income
Through its technology ParkBee is generating a new source of income for property owners. By opening-up their unused company parking capacity, they can start charging parking money 16 hours per day. At the same time car owners in need of parking benefit from better rates than what they would get at the big commercial car parks, and they won’t need to drive around the city for hours in search of a parking space. No wonder that both property owners and car drivers are taking to the concept like bees to honey.