The Swiss energy group Alpiq is now launching its electric mobility subscription service Juicar in Germany and Italy. Juicar has been on the market in Switzerland since August 2018. In Germany the subscription is now available nationwide in cooperation with the fleet operator Arval.
In the field of electric mobility, Juicar operates along the lines of the monthly flat rates of Netflix & Co, at least this is how the business model was introduced back in 2018.
The package at a fixed price includes all services related to the vehicle: from the electric car itself, the matching home charging station, public charging and motor vehicle tax to insurance and the payment of electricity costs. In an accompanying press release, Alpiq stated that customers configure their desired mobility package online and subscribe to it at the monthly package price, can cancel the contract monthly and bear no financial risk. The subscription model was developed in Zurich’s Oyster Lab, the think tank of energy provider Alpiq.
According to the initiators, Juicar is experiencing steadily rising demand in Switzerland. They are now targeting Italy and Germany as the first international markets. A trial operation in North Rhine-Westphalia has already been successfully completed in 2019. Alpiq therefore expects demand to be sufficient. The service is now also available throughout Germany. Whereas previously only electric models from BMW (in Switzerland) and Nissan (in North Rhine-Westphalia) were available, subscribers can now choose between several models from different manufacturers everywhere. In Germany, these include the Nissan Leaf, the Tesla Model 3 and the BMW i3. As far as German prices are concerned, Juicar quotes monthly prices starting at 359 euros for the Nissan Leaf (40 kWh), 369 euros for the BMW i3 (120 Ah) and 1,049 euros for the Tesla Model 3 (75 kWh).
Sales activities for Juicar in Germany are managed from the Alpiq location in Berlin. Fleet operator Arval is on board as a cooperation partner for the German business and is already involved in Switzerland for Juicar. “For us, this partnership represents a very good entry into the sale of electric vehicles to private individuals – also for the German market,” says Christian Schüßler, Commercial Director of Arval Deutschland GmbH. The distribution will be handled by Juicar, while Arval will contribute its expertise in long-term rental models in what was called “a first-class symbiosis”.
The Juicar team wants to grow with Arval in other European countries in the future. The cooperation has also brought the company closer to its goal of offering all of the electric car industry’s ‘best sellers’ on subscription, says Bastian Gerhard, Managing Director of the Oyster Lab. The market launch in Italy, which is now taking place in parallel, is a logical step, as Alpiq has already been active in the field of charging infrastructure there since 2016. However, the Swiss company’s expansion plans for the current year are not yet exhausted: “Our goal for 2020: Juicar will be available in ten countries and will be known by our target group as the first port of call for electric mobility,” claims Gerhard. By 2025, one in ten vehicles is expected to be used via subscription. And as Gerhard says, “We want to be the leader in this market.
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