Usain Bolt: From Olympic sprinter to business co-founder

usain bolt scooters
Why Usain Bolt thinks his e-scooter company will succeed
02:15 - Source: CNN Business
CNN  — 

If there’s one thing the world’s fastest man can’t stand, it’s going slowly.

Usain Bolt’s career as a sprinter has taken him to all corners of the globe and to some of the busiest cities on the planet.

“I’ve been to New York, London, Paris and one thing I’ve noticed is that we all complain about traffic!” Bolt tells CNN’s Anna Stewart.

To combat this problem, the eight-time Olympic champion – world record holder in the 100m and 200m – has come up with a practical and environmentally friendly solution: An electric scooter.

Bolt Mobility launched in the US last year and has now come to Europe, this week launching in Paris, France.

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However, several European cities have banned scooters on safety grounds and Paris is soon to introduce a sidewalk ban of its own in September.

But Bolt, co-founder and brand ambassador for the company, and Sarah Haynes, co-CEO of Bolt Mobility, remain confident the product can be a success.

“We’re actually meeting with city officials to sign an agreement to be good citizens and good actors in France and that’s really, really important for us as a company,” says Haynes.

Lime, Bird, Skip, Spin are just some of the rival scooter names in an already crowded market.

Bolt argues that his scooter is different, allowing for bag, shopping and mobile phone storage, all while reaching top speeds of up to 15 miles per hour.

And the bright yellow color scheme isn’t just to look good.

“The color choice was based on what your eye is going to see faster,” explains Haynes. “Yellow is the fastest color that your brain sees and so we can prevent a lot of the potential accidents and traffic situations.”

And what is Bolt’s response to the detractors who say scooters should only be for kids?

“These are grown up, these are solid!” he laughs. “We’re talking about trying to get from place to place, this is what I’m focused on: How I’m going to be safe and how I’m going to get there on time.

“Come on, if I’m doing something it’s going to be cool!”