30 Jun 2020
30 Jun 2020
As part of our guest blog series on thematic investing, MSCI and Lukas Neckermann share their views on Future Mobility. Although public transport and ride sharing services are taking a hit, some areas of the mobility ecosystem could stand to benefit, including micromobility and autonomous delivery.
Even prior to the COVID-19 crisis, we discussed in our first Thematic Insight1 how the world might be in the midst of the largest transformation in mobility since the advent of the automobile some 120 years ago. Will the current pandemic prove to be a system shock that accelerates the demise of inflexible and unprofitable business models and acts as a catalyst for the growth of more digital and service-oriented businesses in the mobility space? How might industry-wide headwinds affect the new business models and technologies at least in the short-term?
New industries naturally go through a series of iterations before becoming established. In the first decade of the automobile revolution, the rush to gain a foothold led to a flood of companies producing cars. In 1899 alone, some 60 car manufacturers opened their doors, including Renault, Opel, Fiat, Packard, and the Electric Vehicle Company of New York.2 By the time Henry Ford launched his Model T in 1908, there were 485 different companies producing vehicles in the United States.3
Within the last decade, we have seen a similar dramatic rise of autonomous technology, manufacturing and mobility services companies, fueled by billions in mostly venture capital funding. In California alone, as of May 2020, there were 66 technology companies and manufacturers with permits to test autonomous vehicles.4
A growing database collated by Neckermann Strategic Advisors has over 700 public and private companies involved with different elements of the autonomous Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) value chain. A list that doesn’t yet include all the producers of electric, two-wheeled and public transport that contribute to the full mobility ecosystem.
MSCI would like to thank Lukas Neckermann, Managing Director of Neckermann Strategic Advisors, for useful discussions and insightful analysis of this megatrend which have greatly facilitated the preparation of this article.
Lukas Neckermann is the author of three books: “The Mobility Revolution” (2015), “Corporate Mobility Breakthrough 2020” (2017) and “Smart Cities, Smart Mobility: Transforming the Way We Live and Work” (2018).
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1 “Future Mobility: Understanding a new transport ecosystem”, MSCI, April 2020.
2James Flink: "The Automobile Age" (1990), via https://www.scaruffi.com/politics/cars.html
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