Carpooling, now backed by Daimler AG

Pubblicato il 31 Lug 2012

It might seem a contradiction. A giant in the global automotive industry that backs a platform for carpooling. That is to say that a company that produces cars does business with a company that has made of the carpooling (- auto + green + social) its own business.

Yet, this is what is happening between Daimler AG and carpooling.com, who have found a common language, that of sustainable mobility.

This happens because Daimler AG has innovation in its DNA: its founders, Gottlieb Daimler and Carl Benz, made ​​history with the invention of the automobile in 1886. And even because Daimler is German, that means to be very sensitive to environmental issues than most of companies in South Europe are. At least, in so systematic and organized way.
The Group's focus is on innovative and green technologies. For many years now, Daimler has been investing continually in the development of alternative drive systems with the goal of making emission-free driving possible in the long term. So in addition to vehicles with hybrid drive, Daimler now has the broadest range of locally emission-free electric vehicles powered by batteries and fuel cells. This is just one example of how Daimler willingly accepts the challenge of meeting its responsibility towards society and the environment.
A fair business development is now going on new areas of mobility, with equity in startup companies. For example: car2go, MyTaxi, the portal “moovel”, two pilot projects in Germany in the ride-sharing market. And now the investment and partnership with carpooling.com

“We view ridesharing as an important element of intelligently networked mobility. Our engagement
with carpooling.com is a logical step in offering our customers an even wider range for getting from
Point A to Point B,” notes Wilfried Steffen, who heads up Business Innovation at Daimler AG. “We
are pleased that this strategic partnership will enable us to support carpooling.com‟s growth and
further development.”

Founded in Germany about ten years ago, carpooling.com is the world's leading car sharing network with nearly 4 million registered users and daily access to more than 650,000 rides. Carpools can be accessed by computer, mobile phone (iPhone, Android) or social network
(Facebook). A staff of 45 people support the company‟s platforms that offer both short and long carpooling trips. In addition, carpooling.com also offers customised commuting solutions for municipalities and private-sector organizations.
By sharing a lift, people save petrol and money, reduce carbon emissions and meet new friends. Thanks to carpooling.com, 860,000 tons of C02 and 430 million liters of petrol have been saved; not counting the millions of pounds saved by users and the thousands of friendships created (including more than 16 marriages!).

“The partnership gives us an unprecedented opportunity to grow the carpooling.com marketplace.
As a leading automotive player, Daimler will serve as a strong partner in further establishing the role
of modern carpooling in Europe and overseas. We will be utilizing the new capital to further improve
our offerings, broaden our customer service and make carpooling available to even more users
worldwide,” is the way carpooling.com CEO Markus Barnikel explains the reasoning behind Daimler
AG‟s investment in the company.

Here are the terms of the agreement, as distributed in the company's press release few days ago.

– Pioneer in urban mobility concepts and carpooling market leader bundle their know-how

Both companies announced a technical cooperation for the pilot project moovel.

The moovel mobility platform allows users to choose the best way to get from A to B in urban areas.

– Daimler AG takes minority shareholding in carpooling.com GmbH

– Strong international growth planned

The main shareholders will continue to be the company‟s three founders, as well as venture capital firm Earlybird. The capital investment will serve primarily the development and expansion of carpooling.com‟s transport solutions.

The goal of the partnership is to further expand carpooling.com‟s platforms and intelligently
integrate the offerings within Daimler‟s mobility solutions. The partners will be benefiting from
each other‟s experience in connection with customer needs, technical systems development, as
well as in international roll-outs of successful mobility concepts

In Italy, besides carpooling.it, there are different platform focused for carpooling as the one powered by Autostrade per l'Italia, and the startups BringMe o con Roadsharing.

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