18 months ago Andy Nix had never ridden a scooter, a chance meeting with local entrepreneur Jay Martin changed all that. Martin and Nix discussed an idea to bring affordable transportation to Memphis, Tennessee using gas-powered scooters. From this meeting in April of 2017, My City Rides was born.
My City Rides uses scooters as a tool for “empowerment and autonomy” for the local community. Through partnerships with local businesses My City Rides has already deployed Sym Fiddle 3 200i scooters (which come in 6 colors) into the hands of 64 “Flyers”, the term Nix uses for the community of riders he is working to build. By partnering with businesses My City Rides sets up a payroll deduction for the Flyer, this personal investment creates an ownership mentality and helps the individual to begin to build a good credit record.
It’s not just a scooter either! My City Rides provides Flyers with a helmet, armored jacket, gloves, rider training, insurance, license endorsement, and a license plate. Throw in interest-free financing and regular on-site maintenance and you’ve got a reliable means of transportation for around 3 dollars a day.
While Nix set My City Rides up as a 501(c)(3) non-profit they also had to become a licensed motorcycle dealer in Tennessee since they are leasing these scooters with the goal of individual ownership. This has led them to adopt a model similar to Tom’s Shoes where their retail business helps support their larger charitable goals.
Memphis provides an ideal setting in several ways. A large geographic footprint supported by good surface road infrastructure meaning you could get across town without using the interstate. A mild southern climate offers a long riding season so the scooter could be utilized as a reliable means of transportation year round. Finally, a community that would support this idea that Nix is hoping will lead to a culture shift. He has already seen signs of it happening as he sees more and more Flyers during his rides through town.
Andy Nix will tell you that My City Rides couldn’t make it without the community and partners he has in Memphis. From local dealerships like Alleyway Customs to the Memphis Police Department, Nix is working hard to forge working relationships. He had a soft opening in April of 2018 and was one of the sponsors for the Memphis Kings Scooter Club’s annual rally “Dead Elvis” this year. Nix speaks highly of the two-wheeled community in Memphis and loves being a part of his new tribe.
Since the official launch in June of 2018, My City Rides flyers have logged over 40,000 miles! Nix is enthused to see how much the scooters are being utilized by their owners and hopes to have 100 Flyers on the road by June 2019. As for moving outside of Memphis? That is a long-term goal, but Nix is committed to his local community first: “We need to get it right here before we think about taking it to a larger audience”.
Want to learn more about My City Rides? Check out their website: https://www.mycityrides.org/ or stop by their dealership if you’re ever in Memphis.