German automakers BMW Group and Daimler, which owns Mercedes-Benz, have announced a joint venture for mobility services, the two rivals have announced. The partnership, which is still subject to approval by regulators, would combine and expand the two luxury carmakers’ current suite of car sharing, parking, ride hailing, electric-vehicle charging, and multimodal transportation services.
Each company will have a 50 percent stake in the venture. BMW chairman Harald Krüger said in a release that combining the companies’ mobility services will move their customers closer to digital, emissions-free mobility. “We remain competitors when it comes to the best premium vehicles,” Krüger said. “The planned merger of our mobility services will pool our resources and sends a strong signal to our new competitors.”
In some areas, the partnership will combine similar, existing services that both companies have, such as Daimler’s Car2Go car-sharing company and DriveNow, the BMW-owned counterpart. But the venture also gives each side access to areas where one company could be ahead of the other: It will focus on Daimler’s taxi and ride-hailing services, mytaxi, Chauffeur Privé, and Clever Taxi, as well as on BMW’s parking-assist companies, ParkNow and Parkmobile, and its EV-charging companies, ChargeNow and Digital Charging Solutions.
“As pioneers in automotive engineering, we will not leave the task of shaping future urban mobility to others,” Daimler chairman Dieter Zetsche said in the release. “There will be more people than ever before without a car who will still want to be extremely mobile. We want to combine our expertise and experience to develop a unique, sustainable ecosystem for urban mobility.”