The Business of Mobility: How CRIF is kicking MaaS up a notch

In this Q&A, Arianna Lombardo, Head of Mobility Solutions at CRIF, and Ross Douglas, founder of Autonomy, discuss CRIF's entry into the mobility sector.

The Business of Mobility is a series of articles featuring business leaders in sustainable mobility.  

Q&A with Arianna Lombardo (Head of Mobility Solutions at CRIF) and Ross Douglas (founder at Autonomy) . 

CRIF is a global company that specializes in credit and business information systems; offering businesses support in their customer relationships. CRIF was established in Bologna (Italy) in 1988 and now has a global presence in Europe, America, Africa and Asia. In Italy it leads the market for retail credit management, and in continental Europe it leads the market in the banking information sector. CRIF is a global player in integrating business/commercial/credit/marketing management services. 

Ross: Why is CRIF going into the mobility space?

Arianna: CRIF has always had a presence in the global automotive market, in terms of OEMs, leasing companies and vehicle finance. It was a natural step to move with the changing times and support the transition from single car ownership to alternatives like MaaS (mobility as a service.)

Ross: How do you see the industry changing?

Arianna: A key change is “servitization”, which is when companies shift from offering products to offering a service. This is happening across many industries, but it is particularly important for mobility. Either for cost and environmental reasons individual car ownership is not always the best option.

The digital revolution has already made a huge difference, for example allowing for the emergence of the ride-hailing phenomenon and bike-sharing applications, which is made possible by instant and convenient payment, KYC (know your customer), navigation and so on. This is all thanks to innovations in the digital and data space. The challenge is to expand this new digital model also for transport-integrated services.

Ross:  But you’re taking this a step further, with an actual MaaS offering?

Arianna: Our offering “Personal Mobility Manager” supports MaaS and other mobility offerings. It’s a data-driven system that creates comprehensive mobility profiles of the customer. These profiles include their mobility habits and CO2 emission impacts. The mobility operator can then use this profile to tailor value-added services, while also empowering consumers with insights into how to save money on mobility and how to reduce their environmental footprint. 

Ross: So there’s a marketing element to it?

Arianna: I’d say it’s more around supporting a mobility company in their customer engagement, and yes this gives them the potential for upselling. In terms of third-party use of data, we are strictly governed by the PSD2 data exchange protocols (EU law governing payment systems). So, our offering is secure and compliant, and the upside is that we can foster a more transparent and efficient mobility ecosystem.

Ross: So, it’s about being able to customise solutions for the individual?

Arianna: Yes, that’s an important point. Thanks to the advances of digital (which is now used in every facet of our lives, including banking) we can create exciting new services and opportunities for the customer. And we can tailor services for the individual. It’s powerful to be able to say to a customer: “Did you know that you are spending Euro 540 per month on mobility and that your carbon footprint is 7 CO2e per year?” 

Ross: I see that you help facilitate digital car subscription for ViveLeCar

Arianna: Yes, ViveLeCar is one of our valued clients. 

Ross: How does it work?

Arianna: Think of Uber, which has a “fleet” of millions of vehicles but doesn’t actually own one car. It’s similar with ViveLeCar, who are a digital platform for facilitating a subscription service that’s more convenient than renting, buying, or leasing. Car dealers can monetise some of their stock, and customers love the flexibility of the solution. CRIF guarantees a high level of digital processing and great customer engagement. 

Ross: So, your model is B2B?

Arianna: It’s B2B, or more correctly B2B2C. Using the Personal Mobility Manager, mobility operators gain insights into customer behavior, fostering long-term relationships and enhancing customer-centricity. They can also offer targeted services aligned with individual preferences, thereby increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Ross: I think that sums it up well. Lastly, what is the vision for this new CRIF mobility offering. 

Arianna: CRIF’s role in this future landscape is to leverage data intelligently, enabling businesses to analyze, understand, and respond to evolving mobility trends effectively. Ultimately, our goal is to contribute to a sustainable and efficient urban mobility environment that benefits both individuals and society at large.

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