Why did RCI Bank and Services decide to join the City Makers program?
We are observing a gradual shift from car ownership to car use. Customers, in particular those of younger generations, are now less focused on ownership of their vehicle. In response to changes in the way people use cars and the emergence of new technologies, RCI Bank and Services is creating innovative, connected and personalized automobility solutions that will simplify the daily lives of customers of the Alliance brands. To this end, we have designed a global approach to innovation centered on the creation of an ambitious external ecosystem.
Our participation in the City Makers project, then, seemed a given. This open innovation program initiated by Groupe Renault promotes experimentation aimed at better understanding the new challenges facing large cities and tests innovative mobility solutions with start-ups.
This approach is fully in line with our past initiatives. We have already proved our ability to offer new automobility solutions to our customers, such as: car-sharing with the creation of RCI Mobility in July 2015, fleet management service via BulbThings in June 2016, and real-time comparison of taxi company offers, thanks to the takeover of the Karhoo start-up in January 2017.
How does the program work? What are the main stages?
On 20 June, NUMA launched a call to start-ups. The program’s partner companies now have three months to select seven start-ups to work with on the following challenges, all tied to new forms of mobility:
- How can we provide information to car passengers in a fun, interactive and immersive manner?
- How can we simplify the use of various transport methods when commuting in Ile-de-France?
- How can we promote the deployment of electric vehicles and their infrastructure in urban centers?
- How can we improve mobility services or create new ones using data generated by otherwise unused cars?
- How can we use the data on these cars to provide a predictive tool for road maintenance?
- How can we ensure the income of a person who shares his or her car on a platform while integrating mobility services?
Starting in September, the selected start-ups will have three months to test their solutions with the City Makers partner companies before presenting their results in the month of January 2018.
Each partner will act as the pilot for a specific challenge. Which challenge will be piloted by RCI Bank and Services?
We will work with and support the start-ups on all projects, but we have chosen to pilot the challenge “How can we simplify the use of various transport methods when commuting in Ile-de-France?”. The transport offer in most large cities has grown substantially broader in the last few years. New mobility services, such as carsharing, electric scooter rental, and experimental autonomous shuttles, are rounding out the “conventional” transport offer.
In addition, multimodal mobility will very soon be a real-life challenge for businesses. In France, companies with over 100 employees will from January 1, 2018 be required to draw up commute plans favoring the use of transport means other than individual vehicles. As such, we hope to forge a better understanding of the current use of multimodal journeys and identify key findings and future trends.
 Wholly-owned subsidiary of RCI Bank and Services, aimed at developing B2B car-sharing services.
 This innovative solution for managing professional equipment and vehicles enables customers to simply and comprehensively monitor use and costs
 Under Article 51 of the Law on the Energy Transition for Green Growth.