Keatons in Shoreditch, central London, has signed up for a discounted Santander Cycles business account and give their staff unlimited access to hire bikes for work and leisure.
Launched by Mayor Sadiq Khan, the business accounts make it easier for the estate agents to hire a bike and use it to commute, travel to property viewings or meetings, or for meeting friends for a night out, then return it to any one of the over 785 docking stations across central London, 24 hours a day.
Businesses can choose to buy keys for all their staff or provide a pool of them to be booked out using an online tool.
Companies that signed up before 1st July received a 10 per cent discount on each £90 key, which gives unlimited bike access for a year, for all journeys of up to 30 minutes.
Membership can create significant cost savings by reducing the number of pool cars needed by a business, along with their associated running and parking costs. This can also help reduce congestion in the Capital and improve air quality.
Studies have also shown that active staff take 27 per cent fewer sick days and that a cycling scheme in the workplace can reduce turnover by 13 per cent.
Keatons’ Manager Nick Verdi looks after a dozen busy staff in the Shoreditch office who cover an area that stretches a mile in every direction. “Quite a lot of the guys are always in and out of the office on appointments, and more than half of them use the bikes regularly,” said Nick. “Given that we’re so close to the City, getting around by car quickly can be hard. So using the bikes was the obvious thing to do.
“There’s the odd occasion where the car makes more sense but more often than not it’s much easier to jump on a bike than it is to take the car and worry about parking.”
Each member of staff in the office has their own key and uses it to get to house viewings. But they are also free to use them in their own time for personal trips.
Holly Gregory, who joined Keatons three months ago, hadn’t cycled since she was a child.
“The guys have kind of got me back into it and helped me back on a bike. Ever since then I haven’t stopped,” she said. “It’s so much easier to get around.”
“It’s a lot quicker than driving and it’s a lot easier, because you don’t have to worry about parking. It can be difficult to park in this part of London,” she said.
“Some girls don’t want to get on a bike, but you can do it in a dress. If I can do it, they can all do it! A lot of our clients actually use them as well. The whole of London uses them.”
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said, “I want to make London a byword for cycling by making it an easier and safer choice for more Londoners. As part of this, I encourage all businesses in London to sign up to the Santander Cycles Business Accounts scheme and to take advantage of the new incentive.”
For more information on Santander Cycles business accounts visit https://tfl.gov.uk/business-accounts