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Is our Earth rebooting or us?



Streets are empty, roads are clear, sky is clear, air is clean. Is this what the Earth Rebooting will look like?
COVID-19 / Coronavirus has brought us a lot of discruption, anxiety, and to many of us, a tragedy. This is certainly a bitter chapter in our human history book without a doubt.
In just a few months, we have seen how supposed to be one of mostly civilized people have come to a halt. You can have the best technology, the biggest economy, the richest country or the most talent on earth, you have no doubt to surrender to this invisible virus, and still you have not much you can do about it.
Do you realize by now how small and trival we are, as human being, we could possibly get wiped out just like many dynasties and tribes in the history.
But, we, as human kind, we do not surrender easily. If we fall, we will get up. If we lose, we get back and fight. The main difference between human being and animals are the conscience and how we will consider our future generation........NOW.
The further we are apart, the closer we are. The world has changed, to a lot of you, your life has changed from now on. What will happen to the world (and you, and your X-generation) is depending on what you are doing right now.
Everything happens for a reason. Why on earth are we all going through this? Is it a sign from our Earth that, we have to do something now?
Think about it, from panic buying of toliet paper, that's what will happen when we have no more trees to cut...... !
Now, it's time to think for everybody around you. Reach out to them, say hi, say G'day, and even just a short message, it's how we can band together, and cherish this moment when we are all going through this together. It's not about you or me, this country, that border.... we are on the same planet and let's be responsible people and look after each other, and the Earth.
Mother nature will find a way to eliminate the bad apples (we human being). This could be just the beginning..... the Earth is being rebooted.
Stay Healthy and Good Luck !

Free Shuttle For Expo

Recently Xemo team were invited to exhibit at the upcoming National Roads & Traffic Expo in Melbourne. This is an unique opportunities to meet some of the key government and public transport key stakeholders and organisations. Wait, it's a transport Expo! We are pleased to provide an on-demand free shuttle for National Roads & Traffic Expo. Our shuttle will run across South Melbourne shuttling around some of the popular hotels and accommodations. It would take up to 20 mins walk or $5-$10 by taxi. With Xemo, it's free! Just book and select your pickup point, and that's it.

How can Xemo help during train network disruptions

Were you affected by Cranbourne/ Pakenham line fiasco that happened yesterday? A lot of damning report took over the front pages such as this and this .  I have been stranded and had similar experience on another Metro line not too long ago. Not once but 3 successive Fridays of a month. However yesterday was a bit nastier because of the soaring mercury level. I am no expert on making judgments of what, why and how this happened. However I have been on the receiving end far too many times to shrug my shoulder and move on. As mentioned in the blogs previously , one of the core reasons why we are building Xemo is to be able to help our Melbourne commuters find alternative options during such times. Of course we are not building the Xemo mobility platform for such times only. And we also do not claim that you won’t have to face such challenges ever when you are a Xemo guest. After all there is only so many roads and the capacity. However being a Xemo guest allows you to weigh your options and alternatives when it matters most. 

  1. Do you have to wait for replacements bus to take you? 
  2. Do you have to stand and get pushed and shoved every time there is a disruption ?
  3. Do you have to jump on to whatsapp / phone calls / SMS etc to figure out who else is going in same direction at same time and willing to share a cab ?
  4. Do you have to put up with price surge hike during such times by other alternative transport providers ?
Xemo team says no to each of the questions above. With on demand, crowdsourced, point to point, non stop shuttle services, Xemo aims to overcome some of the challenges of our commuting with a bit more  CARE. If you are curious to know more please register here.

Mobility as a Service, an overview

Mobility as a service market is expected to grow to US$ 358.35 billion by 2025 from US$ 38.76 billion in 2017. But what is mobility as a service anyways ?

Mobility as a Service or MaaS is a fundamental shift in the way people will consider their transportation needs in the future. MaaS is described as a shift from personally-owned modes of transportation towards mobility solutions that are consumed as a service. In other words a move away from ownership based model to consumption based model.

The key words here are mobility and service.

The way we explain ourselves of this model at Xemo is akin to the mobile plan. Think of your existing mobile plan and how the service is consumed. Each component of your service is independent. Data(GB), speed, local calls, text messaging, international calls, international roaming, calls within network or outside each component can bundled up or purchased separately. The Telcos do not mandate your purchase plans. They just offer you in the way you like it. Generally if you package them together you get cheaper price while individual plans may be a bit dearer. Some plans, like the one I use for my 8 year old son has limited data per month (my idea of creating value is by making something feel exclusive thus driving a prudent usage). Not only that, consumer can also calibrate the needs of different services at different times. For example during overseas holiday I can buy a specific plan which has roaming included at a cheaper price while during other times of year I may chose not to pay for it at all.

Now let's try to relate it to the Mobility as a Service model.

Let's say you go from your house to Melbourne CBD every day for work. 1 way you would do this is Car - Train - Walk/Tram. The challenges in this model perhaps are traffic congestion, lack of parking, standing in trains, disruption of schedule and overall lack of reliability. Even if today you may not run into these issues sooner or later we will be. All stats and research have proven the inevitable. Like almost everything else happening around us things need to change, and we need to adapt and adjust - sooner the better.

The other option would be to get in your car and drive straight to CBD. And we all know how time consuming and un reliable such commutes are unless you leave home before 7 AM and return after 6 PM.

Current transportation facility does not allow you to do much more than that.

Now imagine the same commute.

You take an electric scooter from your house to the nearest public transport hub (what we call as Xemo Hub) board a shuttle which takes you straight to the station without any stops, and you board the train and finally walked (or even cycled) to your office which is just 5 minutes away. And now extend that idea to be able to do so anywhere around the Australia or even around the world. Just like your phone can work anywhere around the world.

And all of this without having to own anything. The scooters are all parked at the end of your street which is unlocked via a QR code. It can be used by anyone who has the correct QR code (The place where you leave the scooter is a pick up point for someone else). As soon as you board the shuttle a specific amount is deducted from your digital wallet. When you get to CBD you unlock a bike (left by someone) to ride to office and park the bike at the stand and lock it away. 

All of this coordinated via an app so neither do you miss a ride nor do you waste any time.

The above case can extend to many scenarios. Getting to work. Getting to university. Go to conference in a new city. Offsite for a team. All you have to do is configure your travel plans to suit your demand for that time. For example in case of a company offsite you could simply come to a xemo hub and take your bus to the destination and on your way back configure your travel to go back straight home instead of going to office and then home. 

That is in a nutshell the idea behind "Mobility As A Service". The promise of MaaS is 

  • Increased utilisation (Every available seat is used)
  • Better connectivity of resources (Scooter,Shuttle,Train,Tram/Cycle)
  • Better connection between different modes.
  • Reduce waiting time. React smartly to disruption.
  • Demand based configuration of travel plans

Let's look at some of the companies already operating in the MaaS ecosystem. We are all pretty much aware of the giants in this space such as Uber, Ola, Grab. These are typically in the ride hailing business. The ride-sharing services include UberPool (https://www.uber.com), GrabCar (https://www.grab.com/ph/car/),CarNextDoor(https://www.carnextdoor.com.au/). Then there are new services coming up for short distance single person rides such as Limebike (https://www.li.me) or Mobike(https://mobike.com/). On the Mass transit side there are companies who are trying their best to bring economies of scale into this model such as Bridj and chariot (https://www.chariot.com/) and of course Xemo - which is not just a managing and scheduling app but also cuts through the entire demand and supply equation to address mass mobility in business class style.

The MaaS market is as unique as every person who wants the service from a demand perspective. Just like Uber demand is as unique as every person who needs a cab. The supply side of MaaS market is also very varied and big. Ride Share, Ride Hail, Car Share and so on.

No wonder the Mobility as a service market is expected to grow to US$ 358.35 billion by 2025 from US$ 38.76 billion in 2017.

New partner route launched with Wynbus for Point Cook

We are super excited to launch a new feature to support our great partner Wynbus from Point Cook.

Wynbus is a government funded local community project which provides a mobility solution to the local residents by using a number of minibuses to shuttles residents to train station.

The idea is to help reduce the traffic congestion and car park spaces needed.

Xemo is chosen to the key technology partner to provide the booking capability.

Instead of a open search, we can now display Wynbus Routes to choose from. You can select Wynbus A, Wynbus B and Wynbus B.

Simply click on a hub (or virtual bus stop), it will show you the time and route.

The cost starts from $2 per trip per ride.

Book your Wynbus using Xemo to commute in a better and SMARTER way.

Story of a beautiful partnership WYNBUS & XEMO

Xemo team has been busy enhancing its features on the Xemo mobility product to deliver a solution for one of its partners WYNBUS. Suffice to say the two teams came together at a very crucial time to address the growing complaints and  challenges of point cook residents for daily commute.

We wanted to share a bit about the partnership thats been brewing in the background while the commuter frustration has been building at the same time.

The point cook action group* is one of the most progressive organisations in the western suburbs. Last year they came up with an innovative idea of solving the seemingly endless commuter woes by raising an idea called WYNBUS -  MOBILITY ON DEMAND for Wyndham**.

Xemo became ideal partner for technology since we are a Melbourne based tech startup and many members of Xemo team are facing the commuting challenges every day. The insights that Xemo could provide and the vision of WYBUS were an ideal match. Such partnerships are rare but very invaluable.

When Xemo and WYNBUS met each other it seemed like a marriage made in heaven. Xemo was already building its mobile platform for a cheap and crowdsourced transport options and had commissioned a few services for corporate staff, school runs and a community on western suburbs. It was obvious that Xemo platform could offer a lot o the WYNBUS initiative. WYNBUS was kind enough to trust us from technology perspective.

Today we are glad to see all the hard work come to fruition after lots of collaborative meetings, calls, and planning sessions. The WYNBUS on demand service will start from 25th Aug in point cook area and we look hope to see a change in the way Point cook folks commute to work in a - affordable , safe and eco friendly way using WYNBUS.

* More about  POINT COOK ACTION GROUP can be seen here https://www.pointcookactiongroup.org.au/

** More about WYNBUS can be read here https://www.wynbus.org.au/wynbus/

The foundation of xemo

The 4 Pillars of our solution

After the initial problem definition and validation phase as described here, we moved into the second gear. We were absolutely convinced that technology was just a means to address the agony of our commuters' experience. So before coming up with any solution we wanted to investigate and learn the experiences of our commuter community more intimately. We expanded our audience base for research. While we started looking beyond our family and friends, a whole new domain dawned on us called "Mobility as a Service". We were all pleasantly surprised that there is so much going on in this space in terms of research, product development, industry support, and government initiatives. This bolstered our confidence and encouraged us to do our research more methodically.

Thus we collected and analysed lot of data across various aspects. From a supply perspective, we looked at population, demographic, transport network, train schedules, patronage data, infrastructure information, maps govt initiatives, funding, costing etc. On the demand side, we conducted many many interviews - some structured, some random and some via surveys. We then categorised the responses and, not surprisingly, we had rather large categories to consider. We had categories such as comfortability, affordability, productivity, value, convenience, serviceability, cost, reliability, dependence, flexibility and so on. Based on this we were able to define a goal of our solution.

A pragmatic solution that enhanced commuter experience.

With so many categorisations of the experience, we quickly realised that we cannot possibly address all of them. Hence we debated long and hard to articulate several examples for each category. Often the categories would overlap in definition but when we put an example against each then it was easy to differentiate. Eventually, we decided to chose "one and only one unique” category per team member as their primary category. This constraint naturally allowed us to cater for 4 distinct categories - the number of Xemo team members :). After many discussions spread over several days, we finally agreed upon Comfortable/Convenient, Affordable, Reliable and Easy. 

We call these the 4 Pillars of the xemo value proposition. And it has got an easy acronym - C.A.R.E.

Some examples of experiences from our research are:

  1. “I am a single dad and due to my unreliable public transport options I hardly get a chance to drop my two daughters to school without taking a day off”. I have to send them to before and after-school program.
  2. “I have ended up paying almost 100 bucks on uber and daycare last month due to the train disruptions, delays or cancellations".
  3. “I am driving every day from Mornington to CBD for almost 75 minutes wasting valuable time that I can otherwise use to do some work on my laptop”.
  4. “I wish my commute was less stressful and I did not have to worry about the pathetic parking at my station”. 
We did not have any idea how important the 4 pillars would be for us while doing the exercise.  However, later on, almost naturally we started using these pillars to prioritise everything we did during our ideation phase. Our agenda, product design, technology choices, financials, operations were all based on the 4 pillars. If and when we had disagreements on certain topics we would all look at it from the "4 pillar lens", quickly come to a conclusion and move forward.

We were now ready to ideate solutions. The ideation phase was very challenging because of the impact we wanted to have and the scale of the impact. After all, we had the Melbourne commuter community in our mind as our user base.

After lots of whiteboard session, coffee walks, brainstorming sessions we finally defined the "what" of our solution.

We are a demand aggregation technology platform that aims to connect the commuter community with the service provider.

A non-technical way of saying the same would be:
We are the matchmakers for people who commute and companies that provide such service.
Xemo Philosophy We at Xemo strongly feel that the current setup,facilities and management of our daily commute are a barrier to the "business class experience" mindset. With an underlying goal of making small things easy, we are very adamant that our goal is reflected in our solution. This will be easily recognizable in our product and service. From the moment you book to the moment to reach your destination  In my next blog I have detailed how the product works and approaches the goal of providing CARE in commute.

The genesis of xemo

This is the first blog of my multi-part series on the Xemo platform. However, this is only the beginning of what I hope would be a long-time commitment. I think this is an important step for us at Xemo to share the reason and history of our passion in the mobility domain. This part is mostly about the subtle prompts me and my friends were getting almost daily during our commute to office and back. I will blog about the Challenge and the Analysis in detail and a do a sneak peek into the second blog content – the Solution.

The Challenge A few months ago, I was traveling with my family overseas. While boarding, my 7-year-old nonchalantly said to me “dad see empty seats, let’s take this one” pointing to first few rows of the business class. I said to him “no son, our seat is at the back of the plane 54-A, B, C, D keep moving son “. During the layover, he asked me “dad, on the next flight can we just take the seat which is big and right at the front? I won’t have to sleep so uncomfortably – squished between you and mum. I explained to him the whole business class concept – rules, fares, affordability and of course the luxury. I defended my decision of not buying the expensive ticket by saying “we travel so rarely, probably once in two years, I would rather spend the same money to enjoy during the holidays on good food and nice hotel”. Just when I thought I had successfully closed the topic of business class with my curious 7-year-old, my teenaged boy said, “as if dad would travel business class if it were his daily routine”. With a teenager in the family, such quips become all too usual. Certainly, a blog-worthy topic itself. Back from holidays, the elder ones’ offhand remark kept playing in my mind – “as if dad would travel business class if it were his daily routine”. I actually started to scrutinize my daily routine and figured he is right - I do not travel business class style. I commute to station in my car (or sometime bus), struggle to find a parking, take a metro to get to the city – without getting a seat or any personal space, hop on to a tram – being pushed and shoved, wait in a queue for a coffee before finally hitting my desk. Clearly, my daily routine has absolutely no signs of a business class experience. What was more painful is that I figured I had inadvertently given into the “this is how it works” mentality.  That didn’t feel right at all. I realized every bit of my commute experience is some sort of compromise – apart from the music I hear. Is that what I signed up for? Almost 25% of my week is spent working. Combined with commuting time it is almost 40% of the week.  I discussed a lot about this with my friends, colleagues, fellow commuters. The central theme of discussion mostly was:

If we work so hard to enjoy a comfortable, convenient life but never actually have a comfortable, convenient lifestyle then what is it all worth?

The Analysis Obviously not having to work was probably the best solution but of course not the logical one. So what’s left then? The way we get to work! Maybe. We kept discussing the 40% and how we could make it better. Better = less stress, less dependence, more organized, more reliable and more time. However, there was really not much wriggle room in the commute part of the equation. What could we possibly do about it? We cannot crowdsource a new train line or prevent people from using roads, change schools to open and close at different times, change office hours or avoid traveling to the workplace. Changing office hours or work from home was not within our control. Mostly the discussions during commute do not stick. They tend to be short, crisp and forgotten. But it was different with this one. Quite a few of us kept coming back with a new thought or idea the next day; discussed its merits and eventually concluded our proposed solutions were either not rational or too hard. However, there was one idea that was extremely hard but not irrational at all. I and a friend started brainstorming which part of the commute could be optimized. We dissected every bit of our commute – the time to start from home, the traffic congestion on way to the station, the parking choices we made, which train carriage to board on and which one to alight from, which tram to target, which cafe was best to avoid a long queue. Sometimes I took a push bike to reduce the waiting period. My colleague decided to walk the same distance that he used tram for. We logged each step along the way and discussed our observations. It did not take us long to figure that the only common denominator during the commute was Waiting period. More importantly avoidable waiting period. The duration of the wait was different but still, it was the common aspect. We talked about this with other friends and family members and all of them mentioned waiting period as most annoying commute experience. Thus, we concluded the only way we could optimize our commute time was by optimizing our waiting period After having identified and validated the one aspect that could be optimized the question was “How”. We had no control over most of our commute resources – the parking space, the bus, the metro, the tram, the cafe queue. Also, our commute experience was not because we were treating ourselves to a sit-in coffee, skipping a train to be able to get a seat, dropping our kids to school, picking our friends on the way or anything such “luxurious”. On the contrary, we were always working around these choices to catch the same train and follow a fixed schedule just to get to the office on time albeit failing (at least once/twice a week anyway). The Solution This regular discussion and brainstorming gave rise to what we call today as Xemo. More on what this solution offers and how it will help our Melbourne commuter community will be discussed in subsequent blogs. Watch this space.

What is common between Xemo shuttle and Low cost airlines

Has your airlines search ever thrown up search results for Scoot airline (a subsidiary of Singapore Air), Swoop airlines (part of West Jet), Spirit airlines, or Tiger air?  Then you already know what low cost airlines are.

Some of the common characteristics of a low cost airlines are

  • Primarily point-to-point operations
  • Short-haul routes, often between regional or secondary airports
  • Limited passenger services, with additional charges for some services (e.g., on-board catering)
  • A very high proportion of bookings made through the Internet
  • High aircraft utilization rates, with short turnaround between operations
  • A simple management and overhead structure with a lean strategic decision-making process

There are quite a few more but mostly relevant to aviation industry. I picked these only because I see a lot of similarity between these low cost airlines and Xemo. The similarities are deep rooted in the operations and philosophy of both kinds of business

Let go through each of these items one by one

  • Primarily point-to-point operations - Xemo aims to run point to point  non-stop shuttles between two places. If you want to board Xemo you will have to come to a nearest convenient Xemo stop (which we call internally as Xemo hub) and alight at a specific Xemo stop. Xemo already has designated Xemo pick up and drop off locations which integrate with existing infrastructure like Train stations or on Fringes of Mel CBD. If we do not have one that is convenient to you we have a "crowd start" a new route option in our app as well.
  • Short-haul routes, often between regional or secondary airports - Xemo make similar arrangements with its suburban friendly shuttles which means that you can continue to use the Mel metro if that is most convenient way to get into CBD and use the Xemo service for short haul  - home to station.
  • Limited passenger services, with additional charges for some services (e.g., on-board catering) - Obviously only a part of this principles applies to Xemo (since local commuting does not require catering or in-flight entertainment services). We open our services only on those routes where we have enough and consistent demand. To keep our operational costs minimum we have to rely upon a consistent demand hence we encourage our guests to "crowd start" a service to main consistency of service.
  • A very high proportion of bookings made through the Internet - Xemo is essentially a demand aggregation and booking platform. Hence it is prudent that we built smart technology solution to meet all customer needs such as - establishing new routes, bookings, scheduling, tracking, payments and customer service as well.
  • High aircraft utilization rates, with short turnaround between operations - Running multiple shuttles within the same route during peak hours is how we ensure maximum utilization of assets for our operators. 
  • A simple management and overhead structure with a lean strategic decision-making process - being a technology startup  based on kick starter concept (by crowd starting shuttle service routes) the Xemo team makes pragmatic and practical business decisions instead of popular decisions.

 

What is happening in the MaaS space in 2019

I intend to keep this post a running list of all things that are scheduled events, new events, latest updates, in relation to MaaS during 2019.

  1. To begin with, London will be host to the fourth MaaS market conference which will bring together international and local thought-leaders in the MaaS Space.
  2. The Transportation Research Board will have it's 98 annual meeting from the 13-17 January at Washington DC convention centre. A gathering of almost 13k transportation professional from around the world. More details here.
  3. MaaS 2019, Digital Mobility and Smart Journeys is a 1 day conference and will be held in Melbourne on the 2nd of May 2019. More information can be found here

Xemo in 2019 Reflection

It is that time of the year when a reflection of what happened in the year merits some attention. From Xemo perspective the team is very satisfied with what we achieved and what we are set up for in our first year of operation.

We delivered some key projects addressing the commuting and mass transit space. While a few gave us immense learnings there were a few other that we are just delighted to have under our belt.

Our partnership in delivering Wynbus project to the Wyndham community was certainly a highlight of 2019. We are also providing commuting transport services to the employees of one of the biggest automobiles names in the world.

We also extended our model to offer school runs during the third term of 2019 which saw some happy parents and school kids.

We were approached by a community to provide on demand services for their estate which was facing challenges in accessing the walkways due to construction work.

With each project we have learnt a thing or two and consequently improved our app to meet the guests need.

We now have a suite of products as a part of Xemo platform which involve - booking, operational management, admin console for turnkey custom solutions.

Xemo team looks forward to 2020 with

Xemo shuttle a picture is worth a thousand words

Let me explain the photo. These are car parked on the nature strip before 7 AM on a Friday near the station because there is no parking available by that time. I am willing to bet that this is a pretty much the case across all stations in Melbourne suburbs. I can also narrate some interesting things I know people are doing to overcome the parking problem apart from leaving at 6.00 AM in morning The "No Parking! No Problem!" method

Some are paying home owners near the station to rent their carport. 

The "You owe me" method

Use Whats-app to broadcast when you leave home whoever says "I am in" gets  a seat.  You are then expected to return the favor.  

The "Car-bus-tram-bus-car" method 

People are parking in lanes which are closer to a bus stop.   

The  "Switch and Swap" method

One partner leaving early in the morning while the other takes a bus and then 1st coming back in bus while the second brings the car back.  

As much as all these approaches sounds creative they lack a few key aspects - reliability and repeatability . Some require too much coordination while others solve only part of the problem. The first mile  - going to station may be addressed but the last mile from station to home is still a challenge. Xemo shuttles aims to solve the first mile and last mile problem. We are building a platform for crowd sourcing the demand and organize the supply. We are driven to solve three main challenges Right People. Right place. Right time Please register interest if you are keen to hop on the Xemo shuttle coming to your suburb soon.  

Xemo shuttle Guest experience is our biggest differentiator

Having shared the Xemo shuttle service launch plans with many friends and networks, I realised it is not clear to many, on how the xemo shuttle service will operate. Our guests( we call our customers - guest) are feeling a confused on how this whole concept works in reality. At Xemo the goal is to make commuting a stress free  experience. We want to be the Netflix equivalent when it comes to commuting. I will elaborate how the smarts within our app and the serviceability rules in our operations will help us become the "Netflix of commuting" What makes Xemo Shuttle different ?

  1. Xemo shuttle is a minibus/minivan  - 12 seater ( driver included) -  more capacity than a car and better manoeuvrability than a bus.
  2. Xemo is a point to point service without any stoppages.
  3. Being a no stoppage service means Xemo shuttle will pick up guest from one common point and drop at a common point. e.g estate community club to metro station.
    • e.g  community park to metro station.
  4. Xemo shuttle will run only when there are minimum 6 people willing to use a service (for short distance at least). To keep the cost down we need to operate on economy of scale.
  5. Xemo shuttle booking will be at least 36 hrs in advance initially. Unless we get a consistency in demand and guest feel comfortable we will keep our operations very conservative. 
  6. Xemo shuttle will charge the guest only after the service is run. 
  7. Cancellations will not be allowed 24 hrs before the scheduled service. Crowdsourcing our demand means that one change can impact many guests and hence we want to discourage last minute cancellations
  8. A "no show" for a service will be charged to Xemo guest. The benefits of crowdsourcing  help us keep the cost minimum,  effectively any no shows cannot be absorbed at last minutes.
  9. All bookings , payments and tracking will be done via Xemo App which will be available to download soon.
  10. Xemo App is building smarts to identify the nearest pick up and drop spots for all guests based on their preferred search. 
  11. Xemo app is building the smarts in the app to add new services based on the most searched routes. 
  12. Xemo will not hold any sensitive personal information of our guests such as Credit Card Number , home address, date of birth etc.
  13. Xemo will only ask you for email and phone so that we can send you app notifications and emails when we introduce new services and app features.

Xemo shuttle urbanization and global warming

I have previously mentioned how Xemo is trying to address the growing need of commuter. This one further elaborates why we think we need to bring a service to our community and that the potential impact of Xemo offering is not a pipe dream.

 What do the studies tell us?

As per the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) of the United nations 55% of  world’s population lives in urban area. This proportion is expected to increase to 68% by 2050. The study further projects that 2.5 billion people will be in urban areas by 2050.

This study was published in November 2018. This means we are already playing catch up in the Mobility as a Service space.

If telcos went through a transformation tsunami on the back of technology innovations then the next tsunami in our lifestyle, we believe,  will be in the transportation industry. By marrying technology and transportation there will be a new way people will move from point A to point B cheaper, faster and safer. The technology innovation is not only about autonomous  vehicles. It extends to other opportunities such as a marketplace for consumer and operators. Customers can choose the right mode of transport at the right time. Operators can create demand based pricing models , seamless digital payments, and integration with other traditional businesses with retail , tourism and airlines, hospitality etc.

Millennial do not care about car ownership anymore.

There are a lot of publications  and reports that suggest that the millennial do not really aspire to "buy a car", at least not as much as the baby boomers. And when I read the sources independently it was very straightforward to connect the dots between Urbanization and lack of car ownership motivations. Pay per use model, subscription model, no ownership - no maintenance mindset, has a big role to play among the millennial.

Just build more roads and fix it for once please.

The "Induced Demand" phenomenon means once the supply increases, more of a good is consumed. This is consistent with the economic theory of supply and demand;  However the same idea i.e. more roads = reduced congestion has become controversial. In fact it is debatable whether increasing roadway traffic capacity can ever cure congestion problems.

The Personal impact

It requires no PhD to acknowledge that a daily commute to office in personal car has significant impact on 

  1. Budget/Cost -  fuel, parking and tolls , insurance, depreciation, taxes etc as examples.
  2. Opportunity cost - lack of productive time (to get things done), available time (to connect), development time - personal and business (to study, new business opportunities etc).
  3. Health and well-being - the harm we do to our body especially related to back pain, obesity and stress are well-known and well documented due to lengthy "idle" time in our vehicles.

The Xemo App

Given the study, common sense and observations around us what will a little service like Xemo do?

Obviously Xemo shuttle cannot take the problem head on and solve all of world problems. Instead we will provide some services like Xemo Shuttle which will make a very small but hopefully meaningful impact. We like to think about it as "one seat at a time", meaning if we can move one seat from the car to occupy one seat in Xemo shuttle on a long distance or to the nearest metro station then we are making a difference.

Imagine 10 people who would otherwise take 10 cars , 10 parking spots, pay for parking or even walk for 10 minutes from parking to the station instead just hopped on a Xemo shuttle and hopped off at the train station. 

By the way we do not undermine the benefits of existing public transport system at all. In fact we believe that optimal utilization of such expensive infrastructure network can be further improved and utilized by building on demand micro-transit services as an extension. Xemo shuttle is an on demand micro-transit platform which will build a market place based on demand aggregation and smart supply management.

 The Xemo Shuttle

Xemo app allows us to crowd source the demand from people who are going in same direction, at same time, from the same place and have a consistent pattern.

Instead of driving your own car which will take each of you individually to your destination (Melbourne CBD / Metro station or and back) a Xemo shuttle will be available at a common (and convenient) pick up point and drop everyone at a common (and convenient) drop point.

Xemo shuttles will be faster than a traditional bus because Xemo shuttles are 12 seater and run from point A to point B  without any stoppages.

We will be cheaper than car services because we will have economy of scale in our operations as we carry more seats per trip. We will pass on the benefits of economies of scale to your wallet. 

We will be environmentally friendlier because our aim is to move to electric buses as soon as possible and feasible. The E in the XEMO stands for electric , efficient and economical :). 

This will hopefully have positive cascading impact across many aspects such as reducing traffic congestion, avoiding parking hassles, relaxing and stress-free commute and of course reduced carbon foot print per person.

 If you are keen to help Xemo change the world one seat at a time please register for interest here