Avis acquires Zipcar

Cambridge, Massachusetts-based car rental giant Avis buys the car-sharing service Zipcar. Avis is spending 382 million Euros on the acquisition.[1] For Avis, it was about time to get a share in the highly lucrative car-sharing market, which has brilliant prospects of growth. Zipcar itself had managed to climb on the American car-sharing throne and from 2009 onwards, the company started being on the lookout for business in Europe as well. First, they bought the Spanish car-sharing service Catalunya, then in 2010, they took over Streetcar, the British market leader.[2] All in all, the acquisition seems to make sense. As Avis Chief Executive Ron Nielson says: “Avis could help Zipcar achieve better profitability by leveraging Avis’s fleet and infrastructure, as well as offer more vehicles during peak rental periods”.[3] Further, Zipcar, which will operate as a subsidiary of Avis, can expect huge savings on car purchases and insurances. The only thing that could really stand in the way is the merging process itself. Both Avis and Zipcar identify with their own company culture. The question then is how much of Zipcar will be left in the new Avis? Issues like these need proper clarification in order to establish the means for a successful cooperation.

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