BMW Group is aiming to make parking easier for drivers through the acquisition of Parkmobile, which is the largest provider of mobile parking services in North America.
BMW has held a minority investment in the company since 2014, but increased its holdings to reach majority ownership of Atlanta-based Parkmobile, LLC. Parkmobile Group Europe, whose brands also include ParkNow, has been entirely owned by BMW Group since April 2016.
Parkmobile is available in over 300 U.S. cities, including New York City, Philadelphia and Phoenix. The app, which reaches over 8 million registered users, processed 50 million transactions from people seeking parking in North America last year.
The acquisition will enable Parkmobile to become part of BMW Group’s Mobility Services portfolio. It will also allow BMW to address an essential element of urban mobility: parking solutions.
“Up to 30 percent of city traffic is caused by people looking for parking spaces. The acquisition of Parkmobile, LCC makes us the leading international provider of digital parking solutions, and means we can better address the pain point of parking by scaling our offering for customers worldwide,” said Peter Schwarzenbauer, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG.
Parkmobile’s service can be used in any car, enabling ticketless and cashless on-street parking via an app or directly from the car. The service also helps users find, reserve and pay for off-street parking in garages, as well as other transit-related services. Parkmobile also worked with BMW on building its services directly into the vehicle.
“We are proud of what Parkmobile has already achieved and look forward to working with our new colleagues to scale the business even further,” said Bernhard Blättel, head of mobility services at BMW Group.