Car is an expensive asset. A lot is spent on its insurance, servicing, loan payments etc. And despite the expense it remains underutilized most of the time. Ever thought you could make money from your car when it is not being used? Well Paulin Dementhon did think about it, along with the aim of providing the service of having a right car, within walking distance from home, no ownership hassles, and a lower overall budget he created Drivy. Drivy is a peer to peer car rental service launched in 2010 which enables users to rent cars when not in use to them. Here are some facts about the startup which is turning heads around in the car rental vertical.
Startup Vertical: peer to peer car sharing.
Founded On: January 2010.
Total Funding received: $19.46M 3 rounds form 5 investors .
Countries currently present in : France, Germany and Spain.
We had a conversation with Paulin Dementhon about his amazing idea, here is all that he had to say.
Q)Starting a peer-to-peer car rental marketplace is definitely a great idea. Tell us a little about Drivy and your personal motivation for starting this marketplace?
Drivy is a car rental marketplace. The way we use cars is inefficient. if you want to enjoy a good level of service, you need to buy a car and get along with the financial and administrative burden, for a utilization rate that is even low. We want to replace this by a better, on-demand service. Personally, since it’s a huge challenge, with a big potential impact on quality of life and purchasing power, it’s tremendously motivating.
Q)Can you give us a rundown of how it works?
Drivy allows you to rent a car from your neighboor. You just need to put the adress and dates, then choose a car, pay and meet the owner for the checkin. We do all the checkin and checkout on the mobile app now, it’s very quick and convenient. Two weeks ago, we also launched a service called Drivy Open, which allows you to open the doors of the car with your smartphone. The owner doesn’t have to be there.
On the owner side, you just have to create a listing for your car, it’s free. You choose your price, you put pictures, then you receive requests that you accept or not.
Q)What is the value proposition you are offering to users ?
We are offering a better service than owning a car : the right car, within walking distance from home, no ownership hassles, and a lower overall budget.
Q)What is one particular Marketing Tool or process which you swear by, that has helped you gain more users on the platform?
TV coverage was the best tool to gain a lot of users on the platform.
Q)You are present in Europe as of now. Do you plan to launch services in new regions? If yes, what would be your strategy?
We do plan to become universal. Today though our focus is rather on product innovation.
Q) How did you go about getting your initial users?
We had our very first users through press coverage and word to mouth.
Q)What are your future plans? Are you planning to integrate more features in the service ?
We want to keep on reducing friction, so that people rent twice a month instead of twice a year. The easier renting becomes, the more people will use the service. We have thousands of new features to come.
Q) What is Drivy’s biggest achievement to date? How did you go about accomplishing things ?
We have just released Drivy Open 2 weeks ago. It’s a system that lets you open the doors of the car with your smarphone, making self-service cars available everywhere : great for flexibility. I was considering it from day 1 and waited 5 years until we could handle it, until the underlying technology became more mature.
Q) Where do you see Drivy in five years?
In five years, there will be more miles driven on Drivy than on private cars.
Q) Any advice for startups trying to make it big in the sharing economy model ?
For me, the most important is to understand your marketplace dynamics very finely : critical mass, acquisition, retention, repeat.