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SnappCar, one of Europe’s biggest car sharing platforms, dedicated itself to reducing the number of cars in Europe by 5 million in 2022. Doing this will improve the quality of life in European cities, and it will also reduce CO2 emission. Thanks to the take-over, Snappcar can expand into Germany, a market that almost killed the car-sharing platform in the past.
The acquisition of Tamyca
Now, with the acquisition of its German counterpart Tamyca, the startup from Utrecht boasts 400.000 users in the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, and – finally – Germany. Victor van Tol, CEO of SnappCar, says, “Tamyca always had a good reputation in Germany. We want to continue offering German users an impeccable service. This demands a meticulous integration of our ICT systems. Additionally, we have invested in a team in Berlin that will provide our users with the very best service.
Expanding to Germany
CEO Victor van Tol also explained why Germany had almost killed the startup while being present at The Next Web Conference in 2016. He stated the following: “We roughly knew how marketing, PR and sales in The Netherlands worked. We thought local insurance, translation of the website and a week in Berlin with the whole team would do it.” Expanding to Germany seemed to be impossible for the scaleup.
And now they have finally done it, by taking over their German counterpart Tamyca. Previous to this takeover, Europcar invested in Snappcar in June, 2017. According to the scaleup, Europcar enables them to expand to other European countries and to improve and innovate their platform. However, their mission to reduce the amount of cars in urban environments by 5 million remains the same.
Snappcar’s international strategy seems clear. By taking over their counterparts in other European countries, they are expanding to these countries. Some good examples are Snappcar’s acquisitions of their Swedish and Danish counterparts Flexidrive and MinBilDinBil. These actually had already been acquired before Europcar’s investment. Van Tol stated the following about these acquisitions: “We’re now taking a difference approach. It’s not about a country, but about the right metropolitan area. What we need, is density of car owners and the mentality to share one’s car.”
Enough room for growth
However, Germany is different, since some of the biggest car manufacturers in the world originate from Germany. When asked about their expansion to Germany, Snappcar stated the following: “Germany counts 40 million cars at almost 83 million people, and moreover, Germany counts 8 metropolitan areas like Berlin, Hamburg and the Ruhr-gebiet. On top of that, we see potential in smaller cities too, thus we believe that there’s enough room for growth.” The room for growth seems present, although it remains to be seen whether the sharing mentality of Snappcar can exist in Germany.
The best experience
A flawless experience is what Snappcar is aiming for with their peer-to-peer car sharing platform. The startup enables customers to rent cars that are submitted by other customers. Snappcar has created a platform for people who would like to share their car with others. Subsequently, users can rent cars from a selection of 400.000 different submissions of cars by other users. For instance, users can rent an old timer for the best day in their lives, they can rent a van to help moving out, and these users can rent a camper for a nice road-trip. These aren’t all the options of course, but it gives an indication of why people are using Snappcar.
Quality of life
Daily, at least 250 million cars are not being used for an estimated time of 23 hours in Europe. Snappcar argues that, if we would share our cars more often, it would reduce the number of cars necessary. Subsequently, CO2 emissions are reduced as an effect of car-usage. And while this does improve the quality of life in European cities, users may also even find some new friends by sharing their cars. Snappcar’s expansion to Germany seems to be a success, but it remains to be seen whether it will stay this way.