It turned out to be a big pain in the arse. AND I didn't get a bike.
Then the thought struck: there are plenty of locals with a spare bike in most of the tourist places. why can't we tap that market?
Create a portal for people to register their bikes up for hire (and mention the duration and time of the day they can rent their bikes), classify the bikes according to type, expected daily rent and location- and let prospective customers contact the owner. You can charge a small fee from the owner OR the customer.
Some questions need to be answered, though. What if the person renting the bike screws it up? What if the owner tries to act smart and claims damages for preexisting problems?What if the person who takes the bike away never shows up again? you have loads of loose ends, but none which can't be tied (I think). Difficult, yes; but if you have a right strategy, a great programmer and a smooth marketing person who can get people to sign up for the service- requires little or no investment.
Another way to go would be to start small on one of the major bike rental places, create an online presence, and then shift to other tourist spots. Sounds easy, but needs lots of capital.
OK,you can stop scoffing now. There are loads of bike fanatics who like to see India on 2 wheels. And around $60 a day (yes, that's what they charge for a trip to Leh/Ladakh, which takes at least 15 days to complete) there's serious money to be made.
Pick it up if you into bikes, and have time (and money, in case) to invest in.