New investment to strengthen BMW’s involvement in the innovative mobility services market
The BMW Group has concluded a new strategic partnership that will further expand the involvement of the BMW i brand in the field of innovative mobility services. With an equity investment in the live transit information service Moovit, venture capital company BMW i Ventures will help this interactive mobility service expand its global reach.
The multi-award-winning free smartphone app Moovit, which supplies accurate and continuously updated information about public transport services, including their currently available capacity, is already available in around 500 cities worldwide. The investment by BMW i Ventures and other partners will enable this innovative service to be offered in further cities around the world, creating a global information network capable of ensuring quick and convenient urban mobility.
Moovit’s interactive service already has more than 15 million users in 45 countries in 31 languages. In Germany, the first cities to offer this real-time local public transport information service are Berlin and Ulm. The innovative and pioneering service uses a database incorporating all local public transport timetables, as well as information about further transport options such as taxis, car-pooling and car-sharing services.
It allows users to find the fastest route via local transit options to any destination they have entered in their smartphone. Moovit provides ultra-accurate navigation and precise arrival times by incorporating real-time timetable changes and integrating crowd-sourced alerts about bus and rail service delays and capacity levels. The route information and real-time updates are supplied via the mobile phone’s GPS and internet connection. Moovit is available for free in the Apple iTunes App Store, Google Play App Store, Windows Phone App Marketplace, or at moovitapp.com.
Founded in 2011, Moovit is aiming, with the help of its new partners, to integrate many more cities into the Moovit network as quickly as possible. The Moovit vision makes a good fit with BMW i’s objective of offering customers across the world a comprehensive and innovative mobility experience based on pioneering services and with a close focus on integrating public and private modes of transport.
“Promoting urban mobility is one of the biggest and most fascinating challenges of our times,” says Bernhard Blättel, President of BMW i Ventures and BMW Group Vice President Mobility Services. “We believe that Moovit’s service will have important benefits for the future in terms of improving personal mobility within the transport systems of major cities. And we look forward to being a part of this project.”
The BMW i brand has always been firmly focused on providing sustainable premium mobility, whether in the form of vehicles or services. Amongst other things, its portfolio includes a range of innovative integrated mobility solutions.
For example, the Professional navigation system in the BMW i3 and BMW i8 includes an intermodal routing feature capable of providing directions to a Park and Ride car park – where drivers can change conveniently to a bus or rail connection – and also of displaying the rest of the journey, by local public transport, to the final destination.
Stepping out of the vehicle, users are guided by the BMW i Remote app to the right bus or metro line and are also provided with directions for the last lap of their journey on foot. The app also navigates users back to their vehicle on the return journey.
The BMW Group is also working intensively to develop and promote a range of other innovative solutions for sustainable urban mobility. New York-based BMW i Ventures, which was set up to handle these projects, provides equity financing to service providers it identifies as having high potential to make urban mobility smarter, more efficient and more flexible.
Through its previous investments in the fields of e-mobility, navigation, parking, car sharing and intermodality, BMW i Ventures has already entered into strategic partnerships with innovative providers such as JustPark, Chargepoint, Chargemaster and Life360.