Enterprise Stresses Collaboration As Key To MaaS
Joint ventures deemed critical to develop Mobility as a Service
If there’s a future in the transportation industry for Mobility as a Service (MaaS), it won’t happen as a result of any corporate solo efforts. That was the essence of a keynote address made by Mike Mangan, vice president of Enterprise Holdings vanpooling division (otherwise known as Commute with Enterprise) at a meeting held last week by the Institute of Transportation Engineers of the Missouri Valley in St. Louis.
“The transportation industry is currently experiencing a dramatic paradigm shift, as technology inspires new models for moving around within communities,” said Mangan. “Today, commuters have more mobility choices than ever, from traditional taxis and bus lines to vanpooling and bike sharing. How we connect these options can create convenient and seamless multimodal experiences over a common platform, and that’s the central idea behind the Mobility as a Service, or MaaS, movement.”
To the uninitiated, MaaS is a system that integrates a wide variety of transport services into one single service that can be made easily accessible and on demand. The services can be made available on a single application sporting a wide array of transportation options, from car rentals and taxi service to public transport and ride-sharing. The greater the number of options available, the greater the value added to the application.
How Can Car Rentals Benefit From MaaS?
Besides convenience and greater choices, MaaS also provides greater exposure for companies both public and private. This benefits car rentals that make it onto that list. The major thrust of MaaS is to provide alternatives to privately-owned vehicles as the economy shifts towards a financial climate based on sharing. The tricky part is in organizing all the elements and components to make MaaS a practical reality. That and how car rentals can compete for business with others on the menu.
Still, MaaS could open up a range of opportunities for car rental companies like Enterprise, which could benefit from increasing revenues from people who give up their car for an alternative like renting a vehicle. It also increases a great deal of efficiency if car rentals listed on a MaaS app have upgrades their technology on their own platforms. That could make booking much simpler and offer a lengthy list of amenities from versatile rate packages to selecting where a customer can pick up a vehicle.
In the case of Enterprise Holdings, which owns car rental companies Enterprise, National and Alamo as well as business lines like CarShare, CarClub, RideShare and Enterprise Fleet Management, the company is diversified enough to seek partnerships with public transit authorities at the municipal, state and federal levels. With these tandem initiatives, Enterprise believes it can help provide solutions associated with urban transit congestion, environmental emissions, parking space availability and other issues that also play havoc with the company’s ability to manage its own fleets.
“The quickening pace of innovation we’re seeing around the world makes me incredibly optimistic,” added Mangan. “Not only about meeting basic mobility needs, but also about the possibilities for addressing lingering urban and rural mobility challenges. With its global reach and wide range of convenient transportation options, the car rental industry is uniquely positioned to help provide the infrastructure for tomorrow’s MaaS paradigm.”