German automotive giants BMW Group and Daimler AG have announced that they will team up to jointly develop and interlink their car-sharing, ride-hailing, parking, charging and multimodal transport offerings.
The two companies revealed that they will invest up to €1bn ($1.1bn) into the initiative which will see both firms pool their mobility services to provide sustainable urban mobility for their customers.
The services already boast approximately 60 million customers worldwide, and plans are in place to create up to 1,000 new jobs worldwide, as the companies combine their existing mobility services to form five joint ventures: Reach Now, which will focus on multimodal services, Charge Now will be for charging, Free Now will concentrate on taxi ride-hailing, Park Now will be for parking and Share Now will focus on car-sharing.
Dieter Zetsche, chairman of the board of management of Daimler AG and head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, remarked: "We are pooling the strength and expertise of 14 successful brands and investing more than €1bn to establish a new player in the fast-growing market for urban mobility.
"By creating an intelligent network of joint ventures, we will be able to shape current and future urban mobility and draw maximum benefit from the opportunities opened up by digitalization, shared services and the increasing mobility needs of our customers," Zetsche added. "Further cooperation with other providers, including stakes in startups and established players, are also a possible option."
The two automotive giants will aim to build on their current product range and customer base in Europe and America, with the new mobility portfolio focusing on cities, with Berlin selected as the base for the organization's headquarters.
Harald Krüger, management board chairman of BMW AG, commented: "We are creating a leading global game changer. The 60 million customers we already have today will benefit from a seamlessly integrated, sustainable ecosystem of car-sharing, ride-hailing, parking, charging and multimodal transport services.
"We have a clear vision: These five services will merge ever more closely to form a single mobility service portfolio with an all-electric, self-driving fleet of vehicles that charge and park autonomously and interconnect with the other modes of transport."