Europcar buys car-sharer GuidaMi as rival Drivy teams up with Belgium’s D’leteren

January 30, 2017

Vehicle rental and mobility specialist Europcar Group has announced the acquisition of GuidaMi. GuidaMi is a historical player in car-sharing in Milan, and has more than 150 cars available with dedicated car parking spaces across the city.  

The acquisition was done through Ubeeqo, the car-sharing company majority-owned by Europcar.  

Ubeeqo co-founder Benoît Chatelier said: ‘We are glad […] to position Ubeeqo in this promising market with the same ambition we have in other cities: providing businesses and individuals with a ground-breaking alternative to [private] car ownership and encourage those who still own cars to sell them.’  

He added: ‘Milan is one of Europe’s most dynamic cities in the field of mobility solutions providing an alternative to private cars.  

Also available to customers in Milan will be Ubeeqo’s mobility app, which allows users to both book and pay for mobility solutions including car-sharing, car rental and taxi/chauffeur services. The platform also appeals to business customers due to its centralised billing.  

Italy becomes the sixth country where Ubeeqo now offers a mobility alternative to private cars, in addition to France, Belgium, Germany, the UK and Spain, and means it now operates in all of the five largest markets in Europe (EU5).  

Meanwhile, in Belgium, rival car-sharing platform Drivy has announced a collaboration with D’leteren Auto, which is the country’s national importer of VW vehicles. The deal involves numerous D’leteren dealerships in Belgium’s largest two cities, Antwerp and Brussels, putting their vehicles up for rent on Drivy.  

Drivy started operating in Belgium about half a year ago, and the company claims to have more than 8000 users in Belgium, which share around 1000 vehicles. It does not have any cars of its own, only providing a platform for car owners to share their vehicles. In addition to D’leteren, Drivy hopes to team up with more professional partners in the future. If the trial proves successful, the collaboration will be extended beyond Belgium’s two major cities.  

However, its rivals in Belgium are also strengthening their offerings. ALD Automotive Belgium is launching Eazy, a new independent Belgian leasing company that will be the first to focus exclusively on renewable energy vehicles.  

Eazy says that potential pure electric and hybrid users are deterred by the uncertainty over the residual values of these cars – inhibiting them from ‘going electric'. To alleviate this, Eazy assumes this risk, eliminating this barrier to fleet electrification, making it easier for companies to fulfil their CSR commitments.  

Eazy also handles the installation of the charging stations, with its introductory offer giving the charging station and installation free for the first 15 days. The vehicles Eazy offers are the: Nissan Leaf, Renault Zoe, BMW i3, Hyundai Ioniq, Kia Soul EV, Tesla Model X and S and the Nissan e-NV200 and e-NV200 Cargo.  

The offer is currently aimed exclusively at the corporate sector, with the private sector offering following shortly. 

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