Looking back at a challenging but exciting year for new mobility 🛴 🚲 🚗 🚕 🚐 around the globe 🌐. Here are some of the my personal insights of 2020. Staying up to date & exchanging on developments and ideas with you was my personal pleasure - let’s see what 2021 will bring for the ecosystem and all of us.
The mobility service industry was shocked at the beginning of the year by the impacts of the pandemic. Providers and stakeholders were slowly moving through four phases towards a more resilient business setup. The environment is still volatile, consumer preferences and perceptions are changing based on developments around the virus.
Micro mobility 🛴🚲🛵
➡️ E-bike boom 🔋 - seen at the dramatic demand increase in D2C and retail. D2C companies like VanMoof & Cowboy got significant funding rounds and reported strong growth YoY. Retailers in multiple regions were sold out on bikes and e-bikes. Canyon was sold for €800 Mio. at the end of the year, supported by former Apple executive Tony Fadell.
➡️ Shared micro mobility (🛴🚲🛵) was called dead at the beginning go the pandemic but came back strong during the COVID-19 summer. Voi, Tier, Bolt and other providers have raised ambitious funding rounds (more than $500 Mio. 💰💰💰 in total) recently - this will be an exciting 2021 with battle for tenders, innovation and markets in Europe. Bird, Lime and Link are faced with the challenges in Europe and NAR.
➡️ Bike sharing schemes around the globe have seen record numbers. Citi Bike in New York, Santander Bike in London or Vélib in Paris have seen a strong user and trip growth.
The trends in micro mobility are fueled by multiple reasons: riding a bike/scooter is perceived as mode with low infection risk / cities push on slow streets and bike infrastructure / increased awareness for emission free mobility would expect the rise of to continue in 2021.
Car based services 🚗
➡️ The "2020 Free Floating Car Sharing" report was released in January - circumstances in 2020 had a twist on some of the trends. Overall car sharing has recovered to strong demand. Paused expansion of services could continue next year. COVID-19 lead to different use cases for car sharing, blurring the lines to rental cars even more.
➡️ Vehicle subscriptions were one of the hot 🔥 topics of 2020 - consumers are expanding flexibility and all in offerings. Startups and also some OEMs responded - the landscape of providers diversified, with strong players in Spain (Bipi), UK (Drover) and Germany (Cluno, Finn.Auto, Faaren) emerged. Industry experts predict an increasing demand for flexible ownership/usage models within the next 5 to 10 years, choices for consumers will diversify and increase.
Ride Hailing 🚐🚕
Before the pandemic, ride hailing was one of the most hyped modes of new mobility - resulting in the IPOs of Uber and Lyft. This changed dramatically in pandemic - besides public transit, ride hailing and taxi services have seen a drop of 80% and more - with slow recovery ahead. To mitigate the risks, TNCs focusing on core verticals and cutting off risky bets
➡️ Back to the roots: Uber is selling off most of their big bets to focus on rides and delivery. Bikes, autonomous tech, flight taxis and freight is offloaded to other players
➡️ Didi 🇨🇳 and Ola 🇮🇳 are getting closer to the vehicle manufacturing business. Didi launched a purpose build EV⚡️ with BYD for hailing services in China. Ola is building on of the largest factories for electric mopeds 🛵.
➡️ Will we see autonomous shuttles soon? Some stakeholders are focusing on last-mile and long-haul logistics 🚚 first. In the US and China we could see more driverless setups like Waymo in Phoenix or AutoX in Beijing. Slowly moving from a security driver setup to full driverless, we might even see the first commercial project. Europe need to catch up.
Mobility as a service 📱🚉
The concept of the different setups in Mobility as a service is explained 👉 here.
➡️ The deal between Moovit and Intel is one of the stories to remember - Intel paid around $900 for MaaS platform Moovit to integrate the data into the autonomous driving efforts at Mobileye.
➡️ Volkswagen is creating a climate-neutral mobility setup on a Greek 🇬🇷 island. 👉 Read on here. Blue print for roll out in other geographic areas and environments as well?
Further impacts on COVID-19 on shared and new mobility
It doesn't matter, if a company is a startup or an established corporate - the agility and flexibility to respond to changed customer needs and market developments was a crucial success factor to manoeuvre through the first phase of the crisis. A "framework" to respond fast to a changes is more common for startups, but legacy corporates were forced to adopt faster as usual as well. If corporates keep the learnings and maybe embed them in the corporate culture, this could lead to increased customer focus and innovation speed. Disruption has less to do with competences than business model innovations.
➡️ In the recent years, Automotive OEMs and Transportation Corporates were investing in shared mobility offerings. Due to cost pressure and lack of expected results, resources are allocated to the core business and to the other CASE challenges: Connectivity, Autonomous Driving and electrification. The Daimler & BMW JV sold Reach Now to Deutsche Bahn/Mobimeo, Park Now could be next. Volkswagen is shutting down the parking service WePark and Deutsche Bahn was cutting most of the CleverShuttle Ride Sharing markets.
➡️ Venture backed shared mobility service companies were forced to execute hard measures on size and setup of the organisation and budgets. Reducing employees, closing offices or services is never easy. At the end it allowed the companies to reach a more resilient and performant position with a lower cost base. This could get most of them through the crisis and allow an even stronger come back. One example is the above mentioned shared micro mobility vertical.
➡️ More funding along the value chain. More than $8.000.000.000 are on the table for mobility related SPACs (SPAC = Special purpose acquisition company, aka "blank check company) Companies like Nikola, Canoo or Luminar are already listed on the stock market, others will follow early 2021. Find a list of investors presentations here.
➡️ The importance of online channels was accelerated by the pandemic. More and more consumers expect to handle all processes around car purchase and ownership contacts and online. From interacting with customer support pre purchase, the whole buying/ordering process through managing maintenance and service events online.
Last thought: Some of the big tech and mobility startups we know today were founded during or shortly after the last crisis, the financial crisis in 2007 - 2008. In a few years I'm curious to see the "startups stars" founded during the pandemic, creating new markets with technology and customer focus.
Corporate & sustainability strategy VW Brand at Volkswagen AG
Published • 54m
💫 It's a wrap! 💫 Here is my summary of 2020 - please read the article and share your thoughts. Here are some highlights: ➡️ What happened in the verticals of micro mobility 🛵🛴, vehicle on demand or ride hailing 🚕? ➡️ How did providers if shared services like Uber, TIER Mobility, pony, ViaVan and others manoeuvred through the first wave of the pandemic? ➡️ Inspiring examples for hyper local MaaS 🚉📱🚗 vs. big announcements are behind their ambitions ➡️ Will the trends of vehicle subscriptions, SPACs and consolidation and focus 🎯 continue also in 2️⃣0️⃣2️⃣1️⃣?