Mercedes-Benz Vans just revealed its new adVANce “strategic future initiative,” an initiative focused on 3 main areas of coming change: greater connectivity, new hardware solutions, and on-demand transportation services.
According to a press release, the company will “no longer be a mere manufacturer of globally successful vans and the associated services, but will evolve into a provider of customer-focused holistic system solutions.” That seems like a somewhat highfalutin way of saying that the firm will be expanding into the growing on-demand transportation market — a prudent move, considering how rapidly it seems to be growing.
The 3 areas mentioned above are, more specifically: digital@vans; solutions@vans; and mobility@vans. These relate to: vehicle connectivity and IoT applications, new hardware solutions, and on-demand mobility concepts for the transport of goods and passengers, respectively.
The press release continues: “The field digital@vans focuses on integrating state-of-the-art technologies into vans. Among other things, Mercedes-Benz Vans is working on intelligent parts management systems for mobile service and service contractor vehicles. These include automated reordering processes as well as deliveries straight from and to the van. In the field solutions@vans, Mercedes-Benz Vans is working on developments such as automated cargo space systems for delivery vehicles, which, among other things, significantly speed up loading and unloading processes, and enhance their efficiency. In the field mobility@vans, Mercedes-Benz Vans together with various cooperation partners focuses on intelligent mobility concepts for goods and passengers. The latter supplement public transit and make a fast, efficient and individual transport of passengers during peak and off-peak hours possible. In the transport of goods, the intelligent networking of technologies creates opportunities to enhance efficiencies and considerably improve transport on the last mile. In addition, Mercedes-Benz Vans is working on innovative leasing and rental models.”
The Head of Mercedes-Benz Vans, Volker Mornhinweg, commented: “In 2015, we set new records for sales, revenue and operating result, and in 2016 we are achieving top results so far. However, we are not resting on these laurels. Our environment is highly dynamic. The universe of our customers is changing dramatically and rapidly. We are getting ready for this early and comprehensively.”
Notably, Mercedes-Benz Vans will be creating a new business unit for the initiative — with a presence in Berlin, Silicon Valley, and Stuttgart. Clearly, it is aiming at the so-called “creative environments” of startup-heavy regions. The strategy apparently also calls for closer cooperation with existing and new startups.
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