Zipcar Licenses Car-Share SystemBy Azadeh Ensha
Zipcar, the car-sharing service that lets people rent by the hour, is now sharing its proprietary car-management technology with the public sector.
Officially unveiled in Washington on Tuesday after a pilot run that began last year, FastFleet allows fleet operators, like those from governments and universities, to license Zipcar’s technology to help them adopt a shared-car service system.
FastFleet is similar to Zipcar’s model: drivers reserve their vehicles online or over the phone and lock and unlock their cars by holding a FastFleet card to a windshield-mounted reader. But unlike Zipcar, the fleet companies, not FastFleet, own the vehicles. FastFleet can also be customized according to an individual program’s needs.
Scott Griffith, Zipcar’s chief executive, says that licensing his company’s technology is a good way for fleet managers to cut operational costs. He cites the system in Washington, where for every $100 spent on FastFleet technology, the fleet manager saves an average of $500. The cost to license the FastFleet software is determined on a per-car basis and ranges from $65 to $95 for each car every month.
“One of the most attractive parts of the offering is that FastFleet is a proven software,” Mr. Griffith said.
Mr. Griffith added that Zipcar was in open talks with 15 cities, universities and government entities, including the General Services Administration, the government agency that provides vehicles to federal employees, and plans to announce additional FastFleet cities in the next several months.Permalink