The investment was carried out jointly by the PSA Group and MKB, a merchant bank specializing in private investments in the renewable energy and smart cities sector.
The strategic partnership will allow an innovative and profitable car-sharing model to be exported internationally. In particular, it will enable the partners to pool together their assets, networks and areas of expertise.
The transaction will help Communauto to speed up its international expansion, consolidate its leadership position in North America and roll out its electrification strategy.
This partnership with a long-standing player in the North American car-sharing market is part of the PSA Group's "Push to Pass" strategic plan. By helping the Group to meet its customers' various mobility needs, particularly through car-sharing, and enabling it to offer mobility services to the North American market, the partnership fulfils a dual objective.
Commenting, Brigitte Courtehoux, Senior Vice-President of the Connected Services and New Mobility Solutions business unit for the PSA Group, said: "Driven by changing user practices and consumer behaviours, the mobility revolution is transforming our ecosystem, and Communauto's strategy is aimed directly at this paradigm shift. We are now in a position to offer a full range of mobility services and solutions that suit every need."
Kenneth MacKinnon, President and CEO of MacKinnon, Bennett & Co., said: "Car-sharing is becoming a high-potential segment. Led by its experienced CEO, Benoit Robert, the Communauto team has already proved its worth and is at the forefront of this (r)evolution, with its unique business model offering both station-to-station and free-floating car-sharing services, a fleet of vehicles that includes EVs, hybrids and petrol-driven cars, and the possibility to connect with public transport. This very appealing combination is going to significantly improve the urban transport landscape."
Benoît Robert, founder and CEO of Communauto, added: "This strategic alliance gives us direct access to both a global carmaker and a major player in the financing of renewable energies and urban infrastructure. This combination of our know-how with financial backing and a manufacturing base will finally give us the means we need to achieve our ambitions."
About the PSA Group
With sales and revenue of €54 billion in 2015, the PSA Group designs unique automotive experiences and delivers mobility solutions that provide freedom and enjoyment to customers around the world. The Group leverages the models from its three brands, Peugeot, Citroën and DS, as well as a wide array of mobility and smart services from its Free2Move brand, to meet the evolving needs and expectations of automobile users. PSA is the European leader in terms of CO2 emissions, with average emissions of 104.4 grams of CO2 per kilometre in 2015, and an early innovator in the field of autonomous and connected cars, with 1.8 million such vehicles worldwide. It is also involved in financing activities through Banque PSA Finance and in automotive equipment via Faurecia. Find out more at groupe-psa.com/en.
Communauto was founded in Québec City in 1994. The company has a social, environmental and urbanistic mission. It is not only the oldestcarsharing company in North America but also the first North American carsharing organisation to offer a large fleet of 100% electric vehicles as well as both station-based and free-floating carsharing services. It service relies onmore than 2000 vehicles. Its network is in full expansion, present in 7 canadian cities : Kingston, Ottawa, Gatineau, Montreal (Laval and Longueuil), Québec, Sherbrooke, Halifax and, since 2012, in Paris, France.
About MacKinnon Bennett & Compagnie inc. (MKB)
MacKinnon, Bennett & Compagnie inc. is a Montreal-based merchant bank that sources, structures and manages private investments in renewable energy, urban infrastructure services and related sectors for its own account as well as for high net worth individuals, family offices, corporate clients and institutional investors. Since 2010, MKB has secured many investments in growth capital, in particular within Potentia Solar Inc. (disinvestment in 2016), as well as Miovision Technologies Inc., BBOXX Limited, et Meteo Protect SAS. MKB has recently put in place its first diversified fund in private capital, the Fonds d’Associés MKB, in which Communauto is the fourth holding. The next closing for this fund is planned before the end of 2016.
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