Autos

General Motors shutting down Maven car-sharing operations

Key Points
  • GM is shutting down its Maven car-sharing business, a once emerging mobility business for the automaker.
  • GM spokesman Stuart Fowle said the decision was partially due to the coronavirus pandemic but also the business itself, which was not thought to be profitable.
  • The automaker announced Maven as a "personal mobility brand" in January 2016.
A Chevy Volt and a GMC Acadia, parked on Little Raven Court, are available for car share through a new app from Maven in Denver.
Helen H. Richardson | The Denver Post | Getty Images

General Motors is shutting down its Maven car-sharing brand, a once emerging mobility business for the automaker.

GM confirmed Tuesday that the operations are expected to cease by this summer after it communicated the plans earlier in the day to Maven's more than 230,000 users. The company had suspended operations earlier in the year due to Covid-19.

GM spokesman Stuart Fowle said the decision to end the operations was partially due to the virus but also the business itself, which was not thought to be profitable.

"We took the suspension period to critically look at our business and have made the tough decision to transition our resources, capabilities, and technology to other GM businesses where there is greater potential for profit and growth," he wrote in an email to CNBC.

GM announced Maven as a "personal mobility brand" in January 2016. It was the automaker's first significant foray into the car-sharing and mobility space. It was viewed as a competitor to ZipCar and an area for GM to test out new mobility initiatives.  

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After rapidly expanding operations, including the addition of peer-to-peer sharing of vehicles and as a fleet to Uber and Lyft, the program's prominence faded. GM ended service in several major markets last year.

Maven's assets and resources will be transferred to GM's Global Innovation organization, which will use them to develop "new fleet services" and "mobility solutions."

"We've gained extremely valuable insights from operating our own car-sharing business," Pamela Fletcher, GM vice president of Global Innovation, said in an emailed statement. "Our learnings and developments from Maven will go on to benefit and accelerate the growth of other areas of GM business."

Maven had roughly 45 employees and contractors in the U.S. and Canada. GM expects "most employees will have new opportunities within the company," according to Fowle.