The auto industry has experienced the perfect storm over the last few years – rising fuel prices, increasing environmental awareness, drops in consumer spending and the emergence of alternative transport types. All of which have compounded to hit global sales. PSA Peugeot Citroën, owner of the Peugeot brand and the second largest European carmaker is no exception – in mid 2009 ‘adverse market and industry conditions’ were blamed for falls in sales and increasing operating losses. Peugeot’s breadth of vehicle types, including trucks, vans, cars, mopeds and bicycles has often been cited as problematic – potentially spreading resource too thinly and preventing the brand from mastering any particular vehicle type.
机 jī opportunity
Peugeot may have found a way to turn its breadth of offer into real competitive advantage with a recently launched leasing service. After simply signing up over the web to top up a virtual credit card with unités mobilités (mobility units) a member can lease the vehicle of their choice for a few hours or days before returning it to the pool ready for the next member. Although car membership clubs such as Streetcar are nothing new, Peugeot’s ability to offer such a choice (from trucks to bikes) and the use of its existing dealership network as collection and servicing points differentiates its offer from the alternatives and help keep its costs low. Peugeot has evidenced that the service nets out significantly cheaper than owning a car for an average city dweller. After initial trials with Peugeot employees and subsequent roll out to key cities in France uptake has been encouraging and Peugeot plans to launch the service, called Mu, in London early this year. The company is also considering launching a loyalty scheme to enable its members to collect unités mobilités when making purchases with partner companies.
- Exploring new ownership models, including fractional ownership?
- Examining the opportunity to shift from selling products to services?
- Trialing new products and services with your employees?
- Making your consumers stickier using loyalty schemes?