Danish GreenMobility to launch electric car-sharing in Antwerp
The Danish company GreenMobility, which operates electric car-sharing services in Copenhagen and Aarhus, becomes active in Antwerp in April. Brussels and Ghent would follow.
The company will set up its services in Antwerp in a joint venture with local partner Deurnese Transportmaatschappij (DTM), Green Mobility reported in a press release on Monday. GreenMobility will start with 200 to 225 vehicles and will expand that fleet to 475 vehicles if the evaluation project is positive.
First city outside Scandinavia
GreenMobility was founded in 2016 in the Danish capital Copenhagen. Meanwhile, the company is already active in Norway (Oslo), and the beginning of this year, GreenMobility will also expand to the cities of Malmö and Gothenburg in Sweden.
Antwerp will be the first city outside Scandinavia. The car-sharing system can be compared to that other car-sharing system, Poppy. The cars will not have to be parked at fixed locations, and a vehicle is reserved via the smartphone. The cars of GreenMobility, Renault ZOE models, are 100% electric.
“Antwerp offers a lot of opportunities,” says Thomas Heltborg Juul, boss of GreenMobility. “The city has the right size and population density. Moreover, the residents already have experience with partial mobility. We see Belgium as a strong and fast-growing market for electric car-sharing, the optimal opportunity for rapid market entry, and an interesting business model, especially in Flanders.”
Remarkable in Antwerp is the cooperation GreenMobility has set up with DTM Taxi. Initially, they appear to be competitors of each other. The taxi company is responsible for GreenMobility’s call center, which is constantly available. DTM Taxi takes care of the parking and maintenance of the cars.
“We have the experience to maintain a large fleet of cars,” says Steve Van Avermaet of DTM Taxi. GreenMobility had come to Antwerp anyway. As a taxi company, you’d better see if synergies could be developed. With GreenMobility, you rent a car without a driver, and with us, one with a driver. We notice that people come to the city with a shared car or public transport, but when they return home, they prefer to take a taxi.”
More charging points
Antwerp has 11 hotspots with charging and parking facilities for electric cars. This does not seem to be much if up to 475 shared electric cars are added in the long term. The number of public charging points for electric cars is now being considered.
“I think it is important to offer fast chargers in particular,” says Antwerp’s alderman for Mobility, Koen Kennis (N-VA). “We want to expand the number of charging points for electric vehicles in Antwerp within the year. Furthermore, the cooperation of GreenMobility with the taxi sector fits in with our conviction that combining modes of transport is becoming more and more self-evident.”
Trial period of one year
GreenMobolity wants to motivate users to charge the electric cars themselves, and they will be rewarded for this. The company will also create places where customers can charge and park cars for free. “Also, we have teams that drive to the cars to charge them on the street,” says Heltborg.
Nothing is yet known about the rates and other practical modalities. If the pilot project is evaluated favorably, the fleet will systematically grow from the middle of the third year to 475 vehicles in the fifth year. The objective is to grow from 15.000 to 20.000 users in the first year, to 60.000 users by the end of the fifth year.
Besides Cambio, Poppy, and the smaller Bolides, this will be the fourth car-sharing project of its kind in Antwerp.