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Part I of this three-part series focused on the business-to-consumer, B2C, car-sharing market. For Part II of this series, the emphasis will be on the peer-to-peer, P2P car-sharing model. Similarly, the focus of the article will be to highlight the global significance of car sharing, to provide an assessment of how the P2P market fits within the broader car-sharing market, and to provide greater transparency for investors to further research.

Distinguishing B2C and P2P

The list of companies below is organized interchangeably between number of members and number of vehicles by whichever is the highest. When performing research on the P2P car-sharing model, it was more difficult to extract member data, vehicle data, and to distinguish between members registered to use vehicles, versus members registered to offer vehicles for use. Additionally, the ranges of car-sharing prices are mostly determined by car owners who are registered members and this amount varies much more so than conventional B2C models.

P2P car-sharing models have developed over the past 5-6 years and have eliminated the capital and maintenance cost requirements of utilizing car-sharing fleets for services. Instead, P2P car-sharing companies focus on developing a car-sharing marketplace where car owners have the option to provide a service for members seeking to use their owned vehicles on an hourly, daily, and even weekly basis. This model is subscriber-based.

P2P car sharing, along with car sharing in general, reflect the collective collaboration movement as a car-sharing marketplace is established between "peers" rather than by professional entities.

While most companies were willing to provide information, not all contributed to the article. Where information was not timely received a not applicable (N/A) was inserted. Additionally, there are potentially hundreds of other car-sharing operations across the globe. This list is meant to provide a general working idea of the P2P car-sharing market and does not represent every global company with P2P car-sharing operations. All numbers and data herein have been sourced where appropriate and it is important for all readers to consider the data in this article as estimates.

CityzenCar

CityzenCar is a platform for micro car rental between individuals and was established in 2011. The company site allows its members to post ads on their cars. Potential tenants contact owners to reserve their cars by the hour, day, or week. The company claims that a car is not used more than 90% of its time by its owner. CityzenCar is able to match owned vehicles to the need for using vehicles by members. Car owners earn up to thousands of dollars per year.

  • Car-Sharing Type: P2P
  • Cities/Regions Served: France - 22 regions
  • Number of Members: Roughly 20,000 (as of June 2012)
  • Number of Vehicles: N/A
  • Number of Vehicle Locations: Roughly 4,000
  • Rates & Plans: Rates and plans vary depending on vehicle owner listings; insurance

Data is derived from the CityzenCar website - 9/4/2012.

Whipcar

Whipcar is the world's first neighbor-to-neighbor car-sharing service, connecting car owners with approved local drivers across the whole of the UK. The company has been operating since 2010.

  • Car-Sharing Type: P2P
  • Cities/Regions Served: United Kingdom - Birmingham, Cornwall, Leeds, London, Manchester
  • Number of Members: N/A
  • Number of Vehicles: Roughly 19,000 (car owners as of May 2012)
  • Number of Vehicle Locations: Roughly 1,275
  • Rates & Plans: $5 booking fee or 15% plus VAT commission, owner hourly rate plus insurance per day, and insurance surcharge (for drivers under the age of 25 only)

Data is derived from the Whipcar website - 8/30/2012. All currencies are converted using Yahoo Finance.

Buzzcar

Buzzcar, launched in 2011, provides P2P car-sharing services for 20 regions in France.

  • Car-Sharing Type: P2P
  • Cities/Regions Served: France - 20 regions
  • Number of Members: Roughly 11,200 (as of September 2012)
  • Number of Vehicles: Roughly 1,300
  • Number of Vehicle Locations: Varies depending on the number of vehicles listed per owner
  • Rates & Plans: Rates from $36-$140/day (based on website samples); 75 kilometers; insurance

Data is derived from the Buzzcar website - 9/6/2012. All currencies are converted using Yahoo Finance.

Getaround

Founded in 2009, Getaround enables car owners to safely rent out their underutilized cars to a community of trusted drivers. People in need of a car can rent one by the hour using the Getaround website or iPhone app. The company claims car owners invest huge amounts of time and money into an asset they barely use and that cars are driven only 8% of the time, while potential drivers walk past block after block of underutilized cars.

  • Car-Sharing Type: P2P
  • Cities/Regions Served: United States - Portland, San Francisco Bay Area, San Diego, Chicago, and Austin
  • Number of Members: N/A
  • Number of Vehicles: 10,000 (registered car owners as of August 2012)
  • Number of Vehicle Locations: Varies depending on the number of vehicles listed per owner
  • Rates & Plans: Rates from $3-$75/hour (based on website samples); insurance

Data is derived from the Getaround website - 8/30/2012.

Livop

Livop is a car-sharing service between individuals in France. Service areas include Paris, Lyon, and Marseille, among 40 other cities in France. The company began operating in July 2010.

  • Car-Sharing Type: P2P
  • Cities/Regions Served: France - Paris, Lyon, Marseille, and 40 other cities
  • Number of Members: 6,000
  • Number of Vehicles: 1.000
  • Number of Vehicle Locations: 40 cities
  • Rates & Plans: Varies by owner

Data is derived from the Livop website - 9/8/2012.

Voiturelib

Voiturelib is a car-sharing service between individuals across France. Car owners can rent their cars out when they are not in use for car renters.

  • Car-Sharing Type: P2P
  • Cities/Regions Served: France - 50 cities and 186 departments
  • Number of Members: Thousands per month
  • Number of Vehicles: 5,500
  • Number of Vehicle Locations: Varies depending on the number of vehicles listed per owner
  • Rates & Plans: Rates from $19/day (based on website sample); insurance

Data is derived from the Voiturelib website - 9/8/2012.

RelayRides

RelayRides provides a marketplace where car owners can list their vehicles and those that need a ride can rent one by the hour or day. RelayRides first went live in June 2010.

  • Car-Sharing Type: P2P
  • Cities/Regions Served: United States - 20 cities
  • Number of Members: N/A
  • Number of Vehicles: Roughly 4,000 (registered car owners - available listings only)
  • Number of Vehicle Locations: Varies depending on the number of vehicles listed per owner
  • Rates & Plans: Rates from $6-$59.99/hour (based on website samples); gas (dependent upon agreement) and insurance

Data is derived from the RelayRides website - 8/30/2012.

Car Next Door

Car Next Door is the first car-sharing service of its kind in Australia. It gives you access to the car you want, when and where you want it. It lets you borrow cars from your neighbors that would otherwise be sitting idle. It also enables car owners to become mini-entrepreneurs and offset the costs of their cars; and expensive, underutilized asset, by lending it to people in a trusted network.

  • Car-Sharing Type: P2P
  • Cities/Regions Served: Australia - Perth, Brisbane, Sydney, Lismore, Melbourne, and Bendigo, Tasmania - Port Sorell
  • Number of Members: N/A
  • Number of Vehicles: N/A
  • Number of Vehicle Locations: Varies depending on the number of vehicles listed per owner
  • Rates & Plans: Monthly fees free to roughly $19 per month (depending on plan), booking fee free to roughly $5, rates from roughly $5-$15/hour and $25-$55/day; roughly $0.29 per kilometer; damage excess fees from roughly $500-$2,000; insurance

Data is derived from the Car Next Door website - 9/4/2012. All currencies are converted using Yahoo Finance.

JustShareIt

As of January 2012, JustShareIt is the secure person-to-person vehicle sharing marketplace that provides the insurance, technology, and platform to help people safely rent their underutilized vehicles and vessels such as cars, boats, and more among a trusted community of members. The company claims that the average car is idle for 22 hours each day, and that the average cost of ownership and maintenance total $8,500 per year.

  • Car-Sharing Type: P2P
  • Cities/Regions Served: United States - San Francisco Bay Area
  • Number of Members: N/A
  • Number of Vehicles: N/A
  • Number of Vehicle Locations: Varies depending on the number of vehicles listed per owner
  • Rates & Plans: Rates from $5-$20/hour and $40-$120/day (based on website samples); insurance

Data is derived from the JustShareIt website - 9/4/2012.

Wheelz

Wheelz is the only car-sharing platform that provides the benefits of car ownership and car sharing. The company launched at Stanford University, near San Francisco, in September 2011. Zipcar led $13.7 million Series A financing earlier this year.

  • Car-Sharing Type: P2P
  • Cities/Regions Served: United States - Universities including Stanford University, UC Berkeley, UCLA, USC, CalTech, Occidental, Claremont Colleges, and Loyola Marymount, and 3 urban cities
  • Number of Members: N/A
  • Number of Vehicles: N/A
  • Number of Vehicle Locations: Varies depending on the number of vehicles listed per owner
  • Rates & Plans: Insurance

Data is derived from the Wheelz website - 9/4/2012.

School Car Share

The School Car Share software is designed specifically for schools who want a convenient way to implement and manage their own car-share scheme online. It allows both parents and schools to benefit from reduced school congestion, reduced pollution, and improved community relations.

  • Car-Sharing Type: P2P
  • Cities/Regions Served: N/A
  • Number of Members: N/A
  • Number of Vehicles: N/A
  • Number of Vehicle Locations: Varies depending on the number of vehicles listed per owner
  • Rates & Plans: Roughly $30/month

Data is derived from the School Car Share website - 8/30/2012. All currencies are converted using Yahoo Finance.

Carzapp

Carzapp provides a P2P car-sharing service including mobile apps (Android and iOS), car insurance, and Zappkit, a hardware solution to overcome the problem of needing to hand over keys. Carzapp partners include Renault, Peugeot, Vodafone, E.ON, and Capgemini.

  • Car-Sharing Type: P2P
  • Cities/Regions Served: Germany - Berlin
  • Number of Members: N/A
  • Number of Vehicles: Roughly 100 (as of May 2012)
  • Number of Vehicle Locations: Varies depending on the number of vehicles listed per owner
  • Rates & Plans: Insurance

Data is derived from the Carzapp website - 9/8/2012 and other sources as identified.

Other Car Sharing Companies to Note:

Collaboration Car - Pre-launch phase

Tamyca - Germany

SprideShare

Conclusion

Key Points

As with most marketplace Internet-based business models, the goal of the business is to create the market and allow the natural dynamics of supply and demand to take over. While this niche industry is more difficult to break down by comparing numbers, there are a few points we can attempt to understand and relate to what information we have.

First, car owners and P2P car-sharing companies divide the monies earned from cars being shared out to registered members needing a vehicle. Getaround, for example, takes 40% as a commission from prices which are set by their registered car owners. Individuals looking to share a car can use Getaround and other P2P car-sharing services to locate a variety of cars for their potential use similar to the B2C model. "Carkits" can be placed inside owned vehicles to allow for mobile access via smartphone devices.

Second, with the lack of membership data we can only assume a very conservative estimate of at least seventy-five thousand members for these companies, and potentially up to one-hundred thousand. Zipcar, Inc. (ZIP) has taken a stake in Wheelz and as a result has an equity holding in the P2P market. It is not worth comparing membership scale among P2P companies. Zipcar appears to be the only major car-sharing company to have an equity investment or subsidiary position in the P2P market.

A final note of importance for the P2P car-sharing market seems to be that supply versus demand may be out of touch at the moment. Some companies have stated that there is an imbalance with a higher number of registered car owner members compared to the number of registered member car users. This translates to the market possibly providing an oversupply of vehicles for use based on some of the existing established marketplaces.

Competitive Landscape

P2P offers an advantage for car owners. Car ownership is a direct competitor for car-sharing services. These adaptations to car-sharing models need to be understood with respect to the traditional car-sharing model. Car2Go, by Daimler AG (OTCPK:DDAIF) is an example of a service that is more complimentary to traditional models. P2P provides a different dynamic to the equation by using an existing competitor (owned vehicles) and establishing a marketplace for sharing vehicles. It will remain to be seen whether demand for these eagerly-rented owned-vehicles will pick up over time. The P2P business model is younger than the traditional B2C car-sharing operation and will still need to prove successful.

Additionally the marketplace concept for car-sharing services is in its early stages as well. The balance between available owned vehicles and demand for vehicle use will be an extremely important metric between registered members. Membership growth will not necessarily provide better financial results.

If P2P car-sharing is able to achieve robust growth, it could offer significant accessible options to the traditional car-sharing model. However, in many cases, hourly rates seem to be more at a premium when compared to the conventional car-sharing options. Providing the capability for car owners to have discretion within the pricing of vehicles may prove problematic to the optimal success of the marketplace.

For these reasons, it appears that P2P car sharing would be well-served on the tempered side or more so taken as a "wait and see" approach. Based on the review and analysis over the previous two articles, I would consider competition for Zipcar as follows:

  1. Direct car ownership
  2. Auto manufacturers/B2C car sharing
  3. Individual company B2C car sharing/car rental companies
  4. P2P car sharing
Source: Zipcar Versus The Competition: A Comprehensive Perspective On Global Car Sharing, Part II