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TRANSPORT SPECIAL

TRANSPORT SPECIAL FEATURE 39 We’re Not Resting on Our Laurels Sixt innovates interplay with new technologies to create new value for customers Malaysia Airlines Joins oneworld Regine Sixt Regine Sixt is a highly influential German entrepreneur. After her studies she started her career at Sixt, in these days a local car rental company, based in downtown Munich. Together with her husband Erich Sixt she has been determined to develop an international recognized enterprise. It is a unique success story in travel industry. Regine Sixt founded her own charity organisation, the Regine Sixt Childrens’ Aid Foundation “Drying little tears”, which is the official CSR-program of Sixt AG Named the “Woman of the Year” in last year’s World Travel Awards, Regine Sixt continues to forge forward with a company that stands out from the crowd and continues to set itself “ambitious targets”. We asked her how business is going… In more than 100 countries around the world, our corporate colours of orange and black are synonymous with outstanding mobility services. We don’t, however, plan to rest on our laurels: instead, we continually set ourselves even more ambitious targets. As part of this, we are working flat out on our company’s expansion – within reason, of course – and always have our eye to establishing our company in yet more countries. Our presence on the US market is of tremendous importance. Our own rental facilities there have been a huge success, and we also started working with excellent franchise holders at the end of last year. Sixt is a very forwardlooking company in terms of technology. How did you come to be the first car rental company to be included in Apple’s Passbook? One of Sixt’s most deepseated characteristics is its dedication to innovation. This is borne out by the countless new leasing and car rental products and services we have launched over the course of the years. Due in no small part to my son Konstantin, Sixt was quick to recognise the potential represented by mobile services, and we responded by creating our own app. Today, we are present on all widely used smartphone brands, and we are constantly working to take our applications to the next level. Enabling our customers to hire cars using Apple’s Passbook was second nature to us, and we were, I might add, the world’s first car rental company to make this service available. What other technical innovations and updates can we expect to see this year? We keep tabs on how people’s understanding of mobility is constantly changing, and we adapt our products and services to keep up with new developments. With this in mind, you can be certain that we are working on making the rental process even more flexible and simpler. A good example of this is our system for using barcodes for issuing cars: we send a barcode to our customers’ phones, and this barcode gets scanned in at the rental station desk. It’s a system that does away with all other formalities. Our customers can also opt for BMW ConnectedDrive, which keeps them permanently connected to the internet while they are travelling. How is Sixt unlimited progressing? Sixt unlimited is another good example that illustrates how we understand innovative mobility. It is an integrated service offering that combines car rental and leasing, and it caters to all of the mobility needs our customers might have, no matter where they are in Europe. It’s no surprise that Sixt unlimited has been such a hit with people who have to travel a lot. We are now working on making the product even more flexible and creating an attractive range of added value features. How many members and users does DriveNow currently have? Are you thinking of expanding the service to neighbouring European countries, and across the US? An impressive number of people signed up for DriveNow in 2012, and our joint venture with BMW had 75,000 registered customers by the end of the year in Germany. Here, we are focusing on creating an even better network between different modes of transport for the benefit of our customers, and we are working hand in hand with other companies, such as public transport operators, to achieve this. DriveNow is international in scope, so from the very beginning, we planned to launch this service in other major cities in Europe and around the world. [Interview by Richard Barnes] Hall 9 Stand 121 On 1 st February 2013, Malaysia Airlines became part of oneworld, adding one of Asia’s leading airlines to the global airline alliance. For the airline, joining oneworld completes yet another successful phase of its business plan. By joining, Malaysia Airlines, which serves more than 60 destinations in almost 30 countries, will substantially expand the alliance’s network in one of the world’s fastest growing economic powerhouses, South East Asia. More significantly, it strengthens the alliance’s connectivity between many key business cities in Asia and other parts of the world. Meanwhile, the oneworld Visit Malaysia pass was also launched in February, offering discounts on regular published fares for Malaysian domestic flights bought in conjunction with a flight on a oneworld carrier to Malaysia. Hall 26.A Stand 121 ITB BERLIN NEWS • Wednesday 6 th March 2013

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