Sharing Economy

Arity’s 2019 mobility predictions

Rachel Allen · January 25, 2019 · 4 min read
Sharing economy expert Rachel Allen looks into her crystal ball and shares what she is seeing for trends in 2019.

Our sharing economy master Rachel Allen was recently updating her calendar for the New Year and the process got her thinking about the last 12 months and what it means for 2019. Here are a few thoughts, insights, and predictions from the oft-used keyboard of her iPhone.

Sharing Economy Continues to be Dynamic, But They’re Growing Up…

At Arity, something that we are seeing from the leaders we work with is that after adding new services via acquisition and partnerships, companies are going to rely on brand loyalty to transition their customers into new multi-modal subscription plans that include bike and scooter services to solve the ever elusive ‘last mile’ challenge.

Also, Peer to Peer carsharing will continue to grow as more and more consumers, especially millennials, open themselves up to monetizing their unused vehicles as a low risk investment opportunity. As a result, we’ll see an increased push by regulators to understand the impact of carsharing on revenue generation and other factors (public safety, insurance, traffic congestion, etc.).

Evolving economic conditions will heighten the need for more gig drivers to deliver more goods and services. This will cause ‘platform stacking’ (such as a driver working simultaneously for Lyft and Uber) to increase and intensify, introducing a battle for drivers “share of gig miles” between delivery and rideshare services. One potential solution that we’ve been talking about with our partners is the idea of inviting everyone to participate in the ‘gig economy.’ This will be the future.

Increased Collaboration Amongst Friendly Competitors

Sharing economy platforms will continue to balance the need to provide government regulators and insurance companies with the data that is required to sustain operational support, with the desire to protect their competitive interests and their customers’ privacy. There will be more ecosystem partnerships between sharing economy companies and government, as both sides seek ways to smooth over the friction of the past and work better together.

These kinds of collaborations will formalize, enabling seamless multi-modal consumer experiences – i.e. passes that allow for easy A to B to C travel across car, wheels, and public transport. I concur with many of the sharing economy partners that we work with at Arity, that rideshare will continue to grow steadily as the integration of newly acquired scooter and bikeshare divisions. I also think that this will provide providers a significant revenue uptick, while also creating diversified forms of mobility.

What are the OEM’s up to?

Over the next year, the OEMs that don’t yet have existing carshare services in the market will aggressively launch a range of new pilot programs. OEMs with existing pilots already in the market will use 2019 to continue testing and increased validating their models, as they begin to zero in on how they can reduce losses and optimize their customers’ experience. OEM parent companies and investors will continue to financially back these pilot and venture entities, which will continue to bleed capital. Due to the increased competition, sharing economy platforms will look to partner with risk management experts, such as Arity, to gain operational benefits and strategic insights.

One thing that we’ve seen is that Electronic Vehicle (EV) adoption has grown significantly over the past two years.  In order to continue the growth and adoption of EV’s we will need increased collaboration between the transportation, energy and technology industries as well as amplified government involvement. Looking down the road, we could see more EV companies created outside of the OEM sphere, to compliment and contend with Tesla. This will almost certainly create increased friction with government and policymakers as they create competition with the traditional auto industry, something that we have already seen with the Model 3.

As we watch both Uber and Lyft speed towards their IPO’s, I think that we will see an interesting duality emerge in sharing economy. The hyper-competitive environment, which has been a major factor in the rapid maturation of the leaders in the space, will most certainly continue. On the other side, innovation and disruption from both established industry and super aggressive start-ups will continue to drive market and revenue growth in 2019 and beyond. Get ready, because the rapid change and dizzying transformation that has been a hallmark of the emergent sharing economy has just begun!

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