Through providing shared mobility, Co Cars will tackle congestion and pollution in a rapidly growing city whilst giving everyone affordable access to the latest low carbon transport.
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Co Cars has been in the business of shared mobility since 2005. In the South West of England, it has a network of nearly 40 on-street hybrid and electric cars that stretches from Salisbury to Falmouth. In Exeter, it also operate the Co Bikes docked, on-street electric bike hire network.
Co Cars' biggest network is centred on Exeter. Here, there are over 1200 active members who can book and access on-demand 30 cars and 95 electric bikes 24/7 via their smartphones. Cars can be booked from as little as half an hour and bikes in increments of 20 mins. Together, they have already taken 150 cars off the road.
By the end of 2021, Co Cars wants to have increased its Exeter car fleet to at least 55 shared cars, of which over half will be fully electric, and to expand the electric bike network to a minimum of 150 bikes.
This growth is expected to increase membership to 5,000, taking an additional 150 private cars off the roads of Exeter. This will help tackle congestion and pollution in a rapidly growing city whilst giving everyone affordable access to the latest low carbon transport.
When Co Cars deploys its cars and bikes it also works with stakeholders to look at how they can support and enhance existing public transport infrastructure. This helps to create ‘mobility hubs’ that combine multiple modes of transport in one physical location, supporting first/last mile connectivity and a ‘car last’ attitude which results in increased walking, cycling and public transport use.
Transport is the largest emitting sector of greenhouse gases in the UK, responsible for 27% of emissions in 2017. The Government has already passed a net zero emissions law which requires the UK to bring all greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050.
Over the last five years Co Cars' business model has taken an estimated 150 cars off the road, preventing around 150 tonnes of CO2 from being emitted into the atmosphere each year. Co Cars will use the proceeds from this share offer to invest to drive an expected increase in its membership to 5,000, taking an additional 150 private cars off the roads of Exeter and removing a further 230 tonnes of CO2 from the city's atmosphere per annum.
The Board of Directors is made up of electric car and bike users, and the social and environmental mission to provide low carbon, on demand, shared mobility for all is defined in the governing documents. The bulk of the Board is recruited from the membership, and everyone is invited to attend and participate in the Annual General Meeting (AGM) where all new director appointments must be proposed and seconded by existing members.
Co Cars also holds an annual summer event, to which members are invited and can talk to the business in a less formal setting. The business holds pop-up events, regularly sends out email newsletters, conducts an annual survey, and has recruited a pool of people from the survey participants that can be used as a focus group for discussing ideas in depth.
Co Cars uses social media to keep everyone informed and looks to respond in a timely fashion to any enquiries it receives. The company has created a culture whereby members are encouraged to get in touch with the business at any time to discuss any thoughts, ideas or concerns they may have.
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