Irish e-scooter start-up gets approval for launch in the UK

25 Sep 2020

Image: © Jevanto Productions/

Zeus is the latest Irish e-scooter company to make inroads in the UK, receiving approval for its scooter-sharing system to be trialled in various cities.

Having first declared its interest to enter the UK market back in July, an Irish e-scooter start-up called Zeus has now received the stamp of approval from the UK government. The company confirmed that the UK’s Department for Transport ruled that its  e-scooter sharing model can be deployed on city streets as part of ongoing trials across the country.

Zeus was founded by former banker Damian Young, who initially launched the mobility product in the southern German city of Heidelberg in June of this year. Since then, the company has signed agreements with 11 other German cities and is now in talks in eight other European countries.

By the end of this year, the start-up aims to be established in 20 European cities and have 7,000 e-scooters on roads or cycle paths across the continent by 2021. Zeus also said that it aims to grow its staff numbers from 10 to 40 in the next 12 months.

Irish e-scooter success

Plans to trial e-scooters in UK cities have been accelerated as a result of Covid-19, with the government looking to explore transport methods that could ease pressure on public transport systems and allow for physical distancing.

Speaking in July, Young said he was hoping that the Irish Government would follow the lead of the UK and other European nations by giving the green light to public e-scooter sharing systems.

Ronan Garvey, chief operating officer of Zeus, added: “Electric scooters are clean, green and safe and can provide the socially distanced public transportation mode we need right now in these dangerous coronavirus times.”

Another Irish e-scooter start-up, Zipp Mobility, has also received approval to trial its e-scooter model in the UK. The start-up, founded by Charlie Gleeson, recently announced it had secured funding of €500,000 from former Irish rugby star Brian O’Driscoll and a New York-based investor.

Zipp’s e-scooter design includes an aircraft-grade aluminium frame, 10-inch airless tyres, a swappable battery, dual braking and a NanoSeptic handlebar that the company claims can reduce the risk of Covid-19 transmission by 99.98pc.

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic