Elisa, Finland's largest mobile operator, and Palin, a full-service car retailer part of Finland’s largest retailer group, the S-Group, have launched a new smart driving service, the ‘S-Drive’. S-Drive brings together dealerships, maintenance businesses, fleet management companies, insurance companies, and other vehicle related businesses in an ecosystem which provides customers with new levels of service and makes their everyday vehicle related tasks seamless and easy. Implemented using the Helpten Multi-Service Connected Car Platform and Elisa's leading IoT and mobile connectivity platforms, the service creates a ground-breaking data-sharing model for all vehicle related services and brings them conveniently to the private and business vehicles users in a single mobile and online application.
Business Ecosystem Builds Simplicity
According to the CEO of Palin, Petri Arvo, the key idea of S-Drive is to build an ecosystem in which all customer’s vehicle related tasks, from vehicle purchase to parking and surprising events like accidents, are as simple and easy as possible for the drivers and vehicle owners. Petri Arvo also sees that the ways cars are used and owned will experience a rapid transformation in the next few years and S-Drive, and the ecosystem around it, are in the core of this transformation.
With the ecosystem approach the S-Drive achieves the promise of Digital Transformation. It sets the customers and their vehicles at the center of the services and eliminates and automatizes many of the tasks which are burden not only to the customers but also to the businesses themselves. By bringing multiple businesses together around the same data-sharing platform, the S-drive businesses can simplify their processes, improve their customer satisfaction, and increase the customer loyalty more – and more cost-efficiently - than can be achieved by a single business alone.
Connected Car Is Not (Only) About Telematics
Evolution is the keyword in all ecosystems and Connected Car is not an exception. Even though the true potential of Internet-of-Things (IoT) is unlocked only when telematics devices are used this does not happen overnight for all customers. At the same time, if the business waits for the customer-base to exists before developing the new digital services, they most likely find themselves in the backseat and miss the market opportunity. S-Drive solves this dilemma with a scalable freemium model: All customers have access to a free S-Drive application with which they can view all the vehicle related information, receive reminders, self-book services, etc. The entry product also serves as an introduction tool with which the customers become familiar with the capabilities and features of S-Drive. With the more advanced services, based on telematics devices, the customers can then access the extended and additional services, from remote diagnostics, driving style analysis and detailed cost monitoring to full-fledged fleet management features. Palin sees that, even in its simplest form, the S-Drive concept can bring significant business benefits for the dealerships and workshops in the form of increased customer satisfaction and growing business. With the increased vehicle information and improved customer communication Palin can also lower the number of unnecessary customer visits as well as ensure that the required visits do take place at the right time. This alone is a big business benefit for the car service businesses according to the Palin’s CEO, Petri Arvo.
New Value Networks For Car Use and Services
In addition to gaining a competitive edge in the current market place, the S-Drive ecosystem helps the businesses to ensure their future success and protect their market position against the potential changes in the value network, like the car manufacturer’s direct-to-consumer sales or new leasing finance models. By establishing their data-sharing ecosystem now and proactively developing new services for it, they create customer preference for the convenience of the ecosystem and give themselves strategic flexibility in reacting to the future challenges and new market entrants. Examples of these new value network services which S-Group can offer together with their partners like LähiTapiola (insurance and banking) and ABC (400 fuel stations and full-service fuel-station stores) are the driver centric insurance products, new vehicle and maintenance financing products, and ‘fast-lane fuelling’.
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