Where are Europe’s mobility market hotspots?

- Leadership - Nov 29, 2016

Mobility services are regarded as comprehensive solutions that integrate the users’ mobility ecosystems. In this study the term ‘new mobility’ includes various forms of new mobility services: carsharing, ride-sharing, e-hailing, intermodal mobility services, parking services and logistics services

The Berlin-based consultancy Green Business Development (GBD) conducted an independent expert survey with the aim to bring more transparency into the new mobility market.

GBD's European new mobility survey 2016 is the first Europe-wide expert survey on the development of this extremely dynamic market. More than 200 experts from countries participated in this study. Respondents included experts from nine business sectors: the automotive industry, start-ups, public transport agencies, accelerators and incubators, investors, consultancies, governments and public sector, research institutes and universities.

Legislation plays a crucial role in the development of the mobility market

Against the backdrop of changing mobility behavior, innovative concepts, resources, as well as organizational and technical solutions are necessitated. This also includes a change in mobility legislation. According to 60 percent of experts, mobility legislation should become more liberal. While the agreement in most countries ranges from 48 percent-70 percent, amongst Israeli experts the call for liberal mobility legislation to ensure efficient urban mobility is the highest (83 percent). French experts, however, remain skeptical. Only a few (26 percent) would support liberal mobility legislation.

Contrasting developments in cities and rural areas

Currently, new mobility solutions mainly target large urban areas. Concepts such as carsharing and intermodal mobility services have already arrived in metropolitan areas with mature infrastructure and large populations in place. Higher density makes cities particularly attractive. According to experts, the new mobility hotspots of the next few years are expected to be London (35 percent), Berlin (32 percent) and Amsterdam (25 percent). 84 percent of experts agree that start-ups will continue to focus on cities first. While currently, rural areas appear to be chronically neglected, nevertheless, 77 percent of experts see an opportunity for mobility service providers to explore this attractive niche by adapting their offer structures and developing innovative schemes. 

Start-ups are disrupting the mobility market

The mobility market is changing from a two-pillar model of public transport and the automotive industry to a triangular relationship with start-ups. The protagonists who cooperate with start-ups will have a decisive market advantage. 78 percent of experts agree that the automotive industry should extend cooperation and joint ventures with start-ups. While 36 percent agree that the automotive industry should develop own new mobility services. Similar recommendations are given to PTAs: while only 24 percent of experts agree that PTAs should develop their own intelligent transportation system (ITS) services, 90 percent would recommend increased cooperation and joint-ventures with start-ups. The most promising new mobility segments appear to be e-hailing and carsharing which, according to experts, are expected to grow on average annually by 13 percent, and intermodal mobility services by 12 percent within the next five years until 2021.

80 percent of experts, however, believe that only a few start-ups will survive in the next 5-10 years. This is largely believed especially amongst experts from the automotive industry (93 percent), while respondents from start-ups (67 percent) and incubators and accelerators (75 percent) remain more optimistic.

Dynamic mobility market situation with low international transparency

When asked about the most promising start-ups in the respondents’ respective country, more than 120 different start-ups were named. The undecided position is also reflected when asked who will dominate the European new mobility market. 29 percent of experts believe that European start-ups will have a decisive market advantage and will dominate, while only 14 percent expect U.S. start-ups to successfully set hold in the European market. The majority of experts, however, maintain a neutral position (46 - 59 percent) on this issue.

Read the December 2016 issue of Business Review Europe magazine. 

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