Stuttgart/Germany, January 21, 2013
DFS expands its range of mobility services
DFS (Daimler Financial Services) expands car2go and takes the responbility for moovel. There will be also new parking solutions. The mobility services are now consolidated in the company Daimler Mobility Services GmbH.
More and more customers want to be flexibly mobile nowadays, particularly in big cities — and we’re making this possible for them,” said Klaus Entenmann, Chairman of the DFS Board of Management. “We want to be the first choice provider of innovative mobility services.” It is estimated that the number of carsharing customers in Europe alone could increase from roughly 700,000 today to 15 million by 2020. “In view of the huge market potential, our goal is to break the €100-million mark for revenues within the next 24 months,” Entenmann added.
At the beginning of the year, car2go, moovel and other services were consolidated into the DFS subsidiary Daimler Mobility Services GmbH. “As a result, we can now offer customers attractive and networked mobility services from a single source,” said Robert Henrich, former head of car2go and now Managing Director of Daimler Mobility Services GmbH.
Inside just a short time, Daimler’s car2go system has transformed the Group into the world’s leading provider of flexible carsharing models. The concept had already become profitable at various locations by the end of 2012, which was much sooner than expected. “We’re very pleased to have reached break-even in three cities already,” said Henrich.
The number of customers has risen from 60,000 at the end of 2011 to 275,000 today, and is expected to reach half a million by the end of this year. car2go is available in six cities in Germany, where it has more than 100,000 customers. That’s the largest number of customers in the country’s segment for flexible carsharing services. car2go is now offered in 18 cities worldwide and will be expanded to include additional cities this year. The number of vehicles will also be increased from 6,100 to more than 10,000. car2go already employs around 250 people.
“We want to expand the car2go concept for fully automated rentals to include the commercial fleet management sector,” explained Henrich. Taking this step would help both the firms involved and their employees because it would increase fleet capacity utilization and enable staff to use available vehicles from the pool privately and at a relatively low cost – for example, in the evening and on weekends. Plans call for a company fleet carsharing project to be launched this year.
“car2go was the first mobility concept to be developed and tested by Business Innovation, and moovel was the second,” said Wilfried Steffen, Head of Business Innovation at Daimler AG. “Now that it has been absorbed into Daimler Mobility Services GmbH, the stage is set for the successful expansion of moovel so that we can offer customers the best options for traveling from Point A to Point B.” moovel is a smartphone app that enables customers to conveniently compare a variety of mobility options – such as car2go, taxis, ride-sharing opportunities and public transportation systems – at the push of a button. In the future, the platform will not only be offered in many additional cities; customers will also be able to use moovel to pay for their preferred mobility option.
But that’s not the end of the story. Daimler Mobility Services GmbH is currently working on additional solutions for making mobility simpler and more flexible. “We believe there’s great potential for intelligent parking solutions in urban areas,” said Henrich. “New technologies are now available that can make parking space searches and reservations much easier to carry out. Here as well, we want to support our customers to the greatest extent possible with innovative solutions for intelligent networked mobility.” In pursuit of this goal, Daimler acquired a financial stake in GottaPark Inc., which is headquartered in San Francisco, at the end of December 2012. GottaPark customers can now reserve parking spaces online from a pool of more than 300,000 parking spots in eight U.S. cities, as well as in Vancouver, Canada. Daimler’s acquisition of a minority stake in the company has been accompanied by plans for strategic cooperation projects. An initial pilot project is scheduled to be launched in Europe in 2013.
Daimler also has a financial interest in a number of other mobility service providers. They include the company that provides the myTaxi smartphone app and carpooling.com, whose mitfahrgelegenheit.de portal in Germany is the market leader in the carpooling segment. In addition, Daimler has an interest in the tiramizoo urban courier service. Within the framework of car2go, the Group also cooperates with the Europcar rental company, local governments, and many public transport companies.