SA voted to give $2000 to a new Wildcat Ventures bike rental company.
Connor Osburn, senior business finance major from Southlake and CEO of Wildcat Ventures, and David Guinn, senior marketing major from Graham, presented their business plan for UBikes to the 36 members present in Wednesday’s session.
UBikes is a bike rental service that will be housed in the Student Recreation and Wellness Center. Students will be able to rent bikes at different rates depending on the length of the rental. From $4 an hour to $150 dollars for the entire semester, UBikes has several options for students in need of transportation.
Osburn and Guinn said they wanted to offer ACU students a sustainable, affordable and environmentally friendly transportation option around campus. Students will be able to charge the rental fees to their student accounts, and checkouts will be at one central location on campus.
The $2,000 Osburn and Guinn requested from Congress will go directly to purchasing eight bikes to start up the company.
Osburn said Wildcat Ventures wanted to involve the Students’ Association because he thinks the bill is one Congress can proudly stand behind.
He urged Congress to “look at this as a service to students, instead of us just seeking a profit.”
Osburn also pointed out that last year, SA passed several bills funding bike racks and a bike repair station on campus but had not funded actual bikes before.
“SA providing some capital gives Wildcat Ventures the means to fulfill this service for ACU,” Osburn said. “It’s an efficient way to impact students’ lives. Sometimes in the past, money has been spent frivolously and the impact hasn’t been multiplied to as many students as possible.”
The bill to fund this student enterprise, drafted by Caleb Orr, sophomore class president and political science major from McKinney, emphasized the environmental sustainability that a business such as UBikes could promote on campus.
“UBikes is a physical example of practical innovation created by ACU students by seeking to reduce demand for limited supply of parking spots while fostering a culture of both economic and environmental sustainability,” Orr said in the bill.
After a period of questioning for Osburn and Guinn, Congress moved to vote on the bill without any debate. It passed 33 affirming, one opposing and two abstaining.
This $2,000 bill will help UBikes begin offering its services before the end of the semester.
“It was great seeing members of SA Congress come together on what I think is a very important bill,” Orr said. “A lot of times with large sums of money, there’s a lot of controversy. I think Connor and David did an incredible job of explaining how the system functions. I think some of our SA members worked to whip up enough votes to pass a bill like that with overwhelming support, like it should be.”
Osburn and Guinn will continue working to get the wheels turning for UBikes in the coming weeks.
“We look forward to UBikes launching in the next few weeks and also look forward to the positive impact it could have on students who need transportation, as well as hopefully encouraging care for the environment,” Osburn said.