Daimler AG has announced an investment into carpooling.com GmbH, the leading ride sharing network in the world. The main shareholders in the company will continue to be the three founders, along with venture capital business Earlybird. This capital investment will mainly serve to develop and expand the mobility solutions already offered through the ride sharing network.
This investment follows both companies announcing a technical cooperation for pilot project moovel in the middle of last month. The moovel mobility platform gives users the chance to choose the best way to travel from Point ‘A’ to Point ‘B’ in urban areas.
Carpooling.com transports one million people across Europe every month, operating with some 45 staff who support the company’s platforms for affordable carpooling opportunities for short and long trips. The network has four million registered users and daily access to over 650,000 rides. The platform is available online, through Facebook and on smartphone apps. It offers custom-tailored commuting solutions for private-sector organisations and municipalities. Additionally, it offers airline, rail and bus tickets.
Carpooling.com users can review profiles and ratings to know exactly who they will be travelling with. By sharing rides, travellers save money and fuel, reduce their carbon emissions, as well as have the chance to meet new friends. The network has already calculated that 430 million litres of fuel and 860,000 tonnes of carbon emissions have been saved. This doesn’t count the millions its users save and the thousands of friendships that have been created – including 16 marriages.
The strategic partnership between Daimler and carpooling.com combines the know-how of two leading mobility players. Along with its 126 years of expertise in the automotive systems and engineering applications, Daimler is the market leader in completely flexible short-term car hire models – with its subsidiary car2go having more than 130,000 registered users. Since earlier this year, the company has held a share in MyTaxi as well, while it launched moovel just last month. On top of this, it has gathered experience in the ride sharing sector with two pilot projects in Aachen and Ulm with its car2gether ad-hoc ride sharing network.
The goal of the Daimler and carpooling.com partnership is to expand the ride sharing network’s platforms and intelligently integrate its offerings within the mobility solutions offered by Daimler. The partners will benefit from each others’ experience in relation to international rollouts of successful transport concepts, technical systems development and the needs of consumers.
Daimler AG head of business innovation Wilfried Steffen says that they see ride sharing as a significant element of intelligently networked transport. Their partnership with carpooling.com is a logical step in offering consumers a wider range of options to get from Point ‘A’ to Point ‘B’. They are pleased that this strategic partnership will allow them to support the growth and further development of carpooling.com, he added.
Carpooling.com chief executive Markus Barnikel says that this partnership gives the company an unprecedented chance to grow their marketplace. As a leading player in the automotive industry, Daimler AG will serve as a strong partner to further establish the role of modern carpooling in Europe and abroad. They will utilise the new capital to improve their offerings, make carpooling available to even more users around the globe and widen their customer service, he added.
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