Smart Transport

‘Private sector needs to work collaboratively to deliver MaaS future’, says Enterprise

Ben Lawson

The private sector needs to work together, rather than in silos in order to help Mobility as a Service (MaaS) take off in the UK, according to Enterprise.

Ben Lawson, Enterprise vice president strategy for Europe, spoke at October 2020's Virtual Smart Transport Conference and said good MaaS development is all about collaboration and is developed in partnership with policymakers and mobility providers to ensure it works for users and aligns with policy objectives.

He said: “That’s why we favour a licence agreement for the use of privately developed MaaS platforms, which is controlled and managed by the relevant agency or local government.

“This approach means that private innovation can thrive to deliver the public good.

“It needs to reflect the approved transport models in that locality and should not favour one operator over another.”

This is in comparison to what Lawson describes as bad MaaS development, which pits private companies against each other, as well as in direct competition against the public transport system and active travel, ‘the antithesis of collaboration, sustainability and a mutually beneficial solution’.

Lawson said: “We don’t want to see a commoditization of the supply chain.

“We've seen what this does in other industries.

“It does not put the consumer first, it prohibits development and it would mean we don't get a diverse mobility solution.”

Enterprise believes MaaS can play an important part in the recovery from COVID-19, but in order for that to happen solutions need to be convenient, on demand and affordable.

Lawson said that some MaaS skeptics say vehicle ownership is too ingrained for many, but he pointed to other sectors that have been revolutionised by disruptors and innovation like music.

He said: “I remember buying my first record, and tape then even CD.

“But today, my kids have no idea about owning music. They just ask Alexa to play whatever they want to hear on demand.”

Lawson added that if there is a silver lining from COVID-19, it’s that governments across the globe have been granted an opportunity to accelerate transformational change in the mobility sector.

He said: “Combined partnerships are more important than ever to create the flexibility commuters need to react to this fast changing and uncertain environment.

“By integrating and consolidating all methods of travel, consumers can plan for, and manage that transportation, and share public or private using mobile applications.

“Mass offers value for money, convenience and immediate access for business users and consumers. 

“Enterprise is working closely with a diverse network of stakeholders, including mass transit officials, local governments and private partners to help provide the technology for tomorrow's platforms where MaaS can be really successful.”

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