PSA Groupe has rebranded, and taken part in a capital increase of peer-to-peer carsharing start-up Koolicar, becoming a shareholder alongside MAIF, Koolicar’s historic partner since 2010.
The new name, ‘PSA Groupe’ has replaced the name ‘PSA Peugeot Citroën,’ which it had been sporting since 1991.
The company said the move was to align with a shift in its business model towards a broader portfolio of business activities.
The Koolicar investment was worth 18m (£14.55m), and completion will be subject to the fulfilment of certain conditions, including the approval of the relevant anti-trust authorities.
Koolicar offers a connected box which can be fitted on to any type of vehicle, and enables keyless transactions, calculation of mileage and lease duration, and geolocation. It is present in 40 French cities, with over 60,000 registered users, having launched in 2012.
Following the acquisition, the company said it planned to ‘step up’ its strategic growth plan, and obtain the means to equipped up to 30,000 cars with its technology. It will also expand its team from 30 to 100 employees in Paris and Monteal, with the new positions created in IT, marketing and customer service.
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Commenting on the new agreement, Brigitte Courtehoux, PSA Group’s senior vice-president, connected services and mobility said: "Our acquisition of a stake in Koolicar is another step forward in our strategy as a mobility services operator. We want to operate right alongside our customers to provide them with the best mobility solutions."
Stéphane Savouré, the founder of Koolicar said: "In a few short years, France has emerged as the global leader of the sharing economy. We are at the heart of this transformation and we are proud to have our growth supported by two major French groups which, apart from their financial support, will be providing us with market access, as well as technical and manufacturing expertise."