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BMW and Daimler ends UK car sharing scheme amid ‘low adoption rates’

BMW and Daimler is withdrawing its joint ShareNow car sharing venture from the UK

BMW and Daimler have withdrawn their ShareNow car sharing scheme from the UK amid a lack of appetite from consumers.

The two German rivals brought their Car2Go and DriveNow mobility solutions together to form the joint ShareNow urban mobility venture back in February with a vow to launch services in nearly 90 cities in 2019, and expand “tenfold” in the following years.

But the Financial Times reported today (December 19) that the German giants joint car sharing platform, ShareNow, would now be withdrawn from the United States and Canada due the “volatile state of the global mobility landscape” and the “rising infrastructure complexities facing North American transportation”.

Meanwhile, it will leave Brussels, London and Florence due to “low adoption rates”, leaving it operational in just 18 European cities – including seven in Germany.

ShareNow gave more than one million registered motorists the opportunity to use an app-based short-term car rental service which allowed drivers to park their vehicles anywhere within a designated metropolitan zone in large cities.

However, the FT said chairman of the Management Board of BMW, Oliver Zipse, and his Daimler counterpart Ola Källenius had “repeatedly talked down the earning potential of such services”.

As recently as February this year, when the two brands launched the joint mobility scheme, they planned to spend a combined $1.13 billion on the venture.

Speaking at a press conference to announce the partnership, Daimler chief executive Dieter Zetsche said: “There are people who are not interested in car ownership, but in mobility. Individual mobility, on-demand. And that’s where both companies came to the conclusion this is a field where we can be stronger together than separately.”

BMW chairman, Harald Krüger, said: “Everyone was looking at the other side and saw some strengths.

“We can combine our strengths and become a champion. This is the vision.”

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