Lynk & Co is a new automobile brand that started its journey in China, in 2017, and now it arrives in Europe with a revolutionary system for the sharing of vehicles. The idea is to make monthly subscriptions at a cost of 500 euros, which include maintenance costs, taxes and insurance for any driver. In addition, using an application on the mobile phone, the vehicle can be given to third parties that are given high in that app and collect the price agreed between them, so that the "holder" saves part of its quota with each assignment.
"I have been working in the automotive sector for 35 years and six years ago I rethink my life," says Alain Visser, CEO of Lynk & Co and creator of this new business concept. "The world of the car has not changed in all this time, except in relation to product, while today's society has nothing to do with that of three decades ago, it is an arrogant industry and I wanted to open my mind and go towards A more sustainable world, where there are fewer cars on the street and give them a greater use. "
This Belgian of a affable character and speaking six languages, worked at that time in Volvo and raised his project to the Geely Chinese group, owner of the Swedish brand. "They thought it was an authentic madness, but I insisted and they gave me the opportunity." Paradoxically, in the Asian country Lynk & Co started with the traditional cars sale model, "because for those people it was inconceivable that when they had achieved their dream of being owners of something so valuable, we told them that this did not make sense", Comment Visser. However, little by little the subscription format is accepting.
In 2018, the first full year of sales in China, more than 120,000 vehicles were delivered, a real success, but in Europe there was the doubt of how the new formula would work. "We put an objective for 2021 of 9,000 subscribers and in only eight months we have reached 24,000, which share the 1,400 units of the model 01 that have been circulated." It is a compact size SUV that is based on Volvo XC40 and is offered with a hybrid or hybrid plug-in surrounding with 69 km of autonomy.
Of these units, a hundred are in Spain, where, in addition, there are already more than 2,000 members of this community of drivers of Lynk & Co, something surprising considering that no kind of promotion has been made in our country and less than 1 % of the population know this signature.
"We are in an exponential growth phase, although we have to go carefully because we can not add people unlimited without us having the vehicles to meet their needs," explains Alain Visser. "In this month, we have to rethink the forecasts for 2022, because initially the goal was to grow in 20,000 more subscriptions, but it seems obvious that the figures must be changed." Earlier this year, there were 150 people working in the European business, a staff that today is 450 employees and will overcome the 500 at the end of this year.
"The next step will be to enter the US but that will not arrive before 2023 or 2024, and we will do it with this same subscription concept," says the CEO of Lynk & Co. "95% of all our customers opt for subscription, Although we do not close the door to those who want to buy the car and have it on property, with the same options as the rest if they want to share it. We take care of everything, even to pick up the vehicle to take it to a review and deliver it back. "
In that post-sales service part is where critical voices have emerged by the Volvo dealerships, which give that benefit but only get benefits by labor, since in the spare parts they can not apply any margin.
"You have to adapt to the digital age and know how to look for new business opportunities. Almost all of our operations, from the subscription to the resolution of problems, are made by Internet and through our application. There is only no exception of people who approach The few centers that we are opening in European cities to learn and close a contract, "says Visser, in a meeting with Elmundo for the opening of the Lynk & Co experience center in Berlin, the fourth after Amsterdam, Gothenburg and Antwerp.
The philosophy of these centers is not the exhibition of cars, which remains in a very secondary plane, but to offer a place of entertainment for the whole family, with a wide variety of cultural proposals, sale and exposure of different products or rooms where chatting comfortably and take a soda. All this, in a cool environment, which combines a wide variety of trends with a striking and avant-garde decoration. For 2022 the opening of three more centers is planned, the first of them in Barcelona, and two others in Paris and Milan.
Regarding the product offer, Alain Visser believes that people want them to simplify things: "We will have one more model or, at most, and we will incorporate the electric propulsion when the infrastructures are sufficient. In any case, not before 2023 ". The only exception is China, a very new market for the automobile sector and where the car is a clear status symbol with which they want to differentiate.
"If car manufacturers do not spoil, they will be simple suppliers of mobility companies, which will be able to their own software and will do the business," concludes this visionary of the sector. "In 20 or 30 years, 90% of vehicles will circulate around the city and will be autonomous cars from companies such as Uber. Brands will only be recognized as Porsche or Ferrari, they will continue to make sporting sports for a minority. I tell my team That we must decide if we want to be Boeing or Lufthansa. I am clear that the latter; No one says he goes to Munich in a Boeing. "Date Of Update: 21 September 2021, 18:26