German car manufacturer, BMW,is merging its car sharing and ride-hailing services into one app, ReachNow. The ride- hailz ing service and car-sharing service is currently only available in Seattle in the USA while Portland and New York only have the car-sharing feature.

BMW Group acquired all of ReachNow (and DriveNow) earlier in January 2018.

BMW's ride-hailing app ReachNow

Screenshots of BMW's ride-hqiling and car sharing app, ReachNow.

"Today, we embark on the next phase of our journey at ReachNow. We are proudly introducing an all-new experience that lays the foundation for the future of urban mobility. ReachNow is the first company in the world to operate both car sharing and ride-hailing from the same app, a milestone for the mobility services industry and one that we are excited to show our Members," said Dr. Simon Broesamle, Chief Customer Officer at ReachNow.

Betting on ride-hailing

Apart from offering both car sharing and ride-hailing on the same app, what makes ReachNow also "unique" is that it offers only a fleet of cars available from the BMW Group including both the MINI and the BMW i3. Given that, it is clear that BMW is taking aim at both Uber and Lyft as it navigates how to benefit from how both ride-hailing and car sharing have disrupted the car industry and in some cases caused a drop in car sales.

Another industry ReachNow hopes to make a dent in is car rentals. The BMW-owned platform offers discounted prices for multi-hour or multi-day car usage as well.

β€œFor mobility services, a key metric is the number of trips a Member takes with a service. ReachNow’s multimodal service offering gives Members more choice in how they get where they need to be by seamlessly integrating multiple services into one app. We believe this approach is critical to increasing loyalty, as Members have no need to look elsewhere for their mobility needs,” said Dr. Bernhard BlΓ€ttel, Vice President Mobility Services at BMW Group.

BMW follow in the footsteps of Volvo who in 2017 announced the pending availability of their monthly subscription mobility service app. At the time of publishing, there was no indication from BMW whether or when the ReachNow ride-hailing and car sharing platform will be rolled out anywhere in Afrika.

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