Bosch acquires B2B rideshare startup SPLT

Bosch has acquired a ridesharing startup called SPLT, a US start-up based in Detroit toperates a platform that allows companies, universities, and municipal authorities to offer their workforces ridesharing services. Bosch, a leading global automotive industry supplier, is also establishing a new dedicated mobility services division, a sign of the changing times and nature of the automotive space.

SPLT uses an app to connect people who share the same route to their place of work or study. An algorithm finds the best composition for the ride-share, and computes the fastest route. The aim is to reduce congestion and make the daily commute more relaxed. SPLT was founded in 2015. Some 140,000 users in the United States, Mexico, and Germany currently take advantage of the service. It has been agreed that the purchase price will not be disclosed.

The SPLT acquisition is a cornerstone piece of its new focus on mobility services, with the aim of offering everything from shared rides in cars to company buses on the same, easy to use platform with end user smartphone apps and easy ride booking. SPLT will continue to operate independently as a wholly owned subsidiary of Bosch post acquisition close.

Other mobility services offerings that Bosch has in market include e-scooter rental, via its subsidiary COUP, which began in Berlin in 2016, expanded to Paris last year and is expanding to Madrid later in 2018, bringing the total fleet size to 3,500 electric scooters. It also has system!e services it’s introducing today, which can offer up a true “extended range forecast” to help conquer range anxiety in potential EV buyers by offering a precise range based on the location and accessibility of charging spots along a route.

Basically, everyone wants a piece of the connectivity puzzle when it comes to the future of automotive and transportation, and mobility services is a good way to get there. Smart move by Bosch, but the transition is going to be interesting as more legacy players figure out where they sit in the coming post-ownership automotive world.

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