Home Back Issues May 2012 The bicycle thief

The bicycle thief

| Print |  Email
Articles - May 2012
Monday, April 23, 2012

 

0512_Launch_Biketrak
Kristine Akins, CEO of BikeTrak
// Photo by Alexandra Shyshkina

When Kristine Akins had a second bike stolen in 2010, the veteran entrepreneur didn’t get mad. She got even. In 2011, she founded BikeTrak, a startup that is building GPS-powered security devices for bikes. Embedded in the bicycle, the unit will automatically alert riders and police when a bicycle is stolen, then pinpoint where the bike is at any given time. “It’s a complete system for thwarting bike theft,” says Akins. The system operates at the nexus of several cutting-edge technologies, including GPS, cellular chip and “machine-to-machine” communications. “There were significant challenges,” says Akins. Other technical hurdles include ensuring the unit isn’t on or activated when the bike is accidentally jostled or when the rider moves the bike, and embedding the device, with its three antennas, in the actual bike frame. Akins is testing a “Beta I” version of BikeTrak this month — the initial round of units will be built into the water cage — and hopes to release about 200 products this summer, just before the September Interbike trade show in Las Vegas. Akins has been working with Portland police on the device and says detectives “love the idea” of an automated system. Would-be vigilantes, take note. A notice on the BikeTrak web site likely will read: “Don’t go after the thief yourself.”

COMPANY:
BikeTrak
PRODUCT:
Bicycle security devices
CEO:
Kristine Akins
HEADQUARTERS:
Portland
LAUNCHED:
2011

MONEY TRAIL
Received $150,000 in convertible note funding. “We’re looking at getting $750,000 before launch,” says Akins. Named as a semi-finalist in Angel Oregon 2012. Two full-time employees, several part-time and contractor workers. Retail launch price is $299. “This is heavy-duty technology, but we hope to get prices down over time.”

BAROMETER PDX
“Bikes are so easy to steal,” says Akins. “If thieves think they might be tracked, they’ll probably think twice. Ninety percent of thieves are idiots. But we’re struggling a bit in terms of publicizing where the unit will be located on the bike.”
 

Comments   

 
Guest
0 #1 RE: The bicycle thiefGuest 2013-08-19 16:31:40
Interested in your product, have three bikes I would like install your product. I use a IOS MAC computer any problems with this device ?? The problem with some tracking devices is the range. The battery life and preferences are another. Can your product be used outside your current testing area ??
Quote | Report to administrator
 

More Articles

Shifting Ground

November/December 2014
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY JOE ROJAS-BURKE

Bans on genetically modified crops create uncertainty for farmers.


Read more...

I Know How You Feel

November/December 2014
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY JESSICA RIDGWAY

Most smartphones come equipped with speech recognition systems like Siri or Cortana that are capable of understanding the human voice and putting words into actions. But what if smartphones could do more? What if smartphones could register feeling?


Read more...

The 100 Best Companies survey is open

News
Friday, October 24, 2014

100-best-logo-2015 500pxw-1How does your workplace stack up against competitors? How can you improve workplace practices to help recruit and retain employees? Find out by taking our 100 Best Companies to Work for in Oregon survey!


Read more...

Kill the Meeting

November/December 2014
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY AMY MILSHTEIN

Meetings get a bad rap. A few local companies make them count.


Read more...

The clean fuels opportunity

News
Monday, November 10, 2014
111014-dirtyfuel-thumbBY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR

A market for low-carbon transportation fuels has a chance to flourish in Oregon if regulators adopt the second phase of the state’s Clean Fuels Program.


Read more...

Political Clout

November/December 2014
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY KIM MOORE

Businesses spend billions of dollars each year trying to influence political decision makers by piling money into campaigns.


Read more...

Revenge Forestry

November/December 2014
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
BY JONATHAN FROCHTZWAJG

A flare-up in the Elliott Forest raises questions about détente in Oregon’s timber wars.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS