Daimler and BMW said that they will withdraw their Share Now and Car2Go joint venture from the North American car-sharing market, halting their operation in Montreal, New York, Seattle, Washington, D.C., and Vancouver on February 29.
The two German car makers cited “volatile state of the global mobility landscape” as the reason of their retirement from the NA car-sharing business, as well as the costs of operating in North America, Reuters reports.
In addition, Share Now and Car2Go will also halt their activity in three European cities, namely Florence, London and Brussels. The companies will instead focus on “our remaining European cities in which we, along with our shareholders, believe show the greatest potential for profitable growth and mobility innovation.”
Back in 2018, Daimler bought Europcar’s remaining 25 percent stake in Car2Go; last year BMW and Daimler merged Car2Go and DriveNow, along with their respective ride-hailing, parking and charging services.
BMW and Daimler’s car-sharing services allowed customers to rent vehicles by the minute and park them on the street or at parking meters without charge. Competition however was tough from rivals like Uber, Lyft and the numerous electric scooters.
Last October, the car-sharing companies ended their operations in Denver, Austin, Texas; Portland, Oregon; and Calgary, British Columbia. They also announced their withdrawal from Chicago.
This is seen as the latest sign of the struggles mobility companies are faced with when trying to make their businesses financially sensible. BMW’s CEO Oliver Zipse said last month that “there are potentially ‘disrupting’ business models that rely on car usage rather than car ownership. But they are focused on very specific areas with high population densities to ensure high utilization rates.”