​Car-sharing service Socar acquires car management firm for safer service

Park Sae-jin Reporter() | Posted : July 19, 2019, 11:13 | Updated : July 19, 2019, 11:13

[Courtesy of Socar]

SEOUL -- In an effort to expand its presence in South Korea's rapidly growing mobility service market, Socar, a car-sharing company based in Seoul, has acquired Charcare which provides total car cleaning and management services.

Socar said in a statement on Friday that it acquired Charcare to provide safer and more satiable service to customers by maintaining the top condition of its cars in real-time. Details were not disclosed. 

"Vehicle management and data optimization are key elements of mobility services. Along with Chacare, we will strive to develop the mobility ecosystem," Socar CEO Lee Jae-woong was quoted as saying.

Established in 2011, Socar has attracted more than 1.5 million users with its simple and fast smartphone app-based car-sharing service. The company differentiated its service from previous rent-a-car services by increasing accessibility and lowering rental fees.

Socar operates about 4,000 service areas near subway stations and other public transportation depots such as bus terminals and train stations. Anyone with Socar's app can easily rent a car with just a few taps on smartphones.

Service fees are optimized for people who wish to travel short distances. Socar charges an average of 180 won ($0.15) per kilometer (0.62 miles) for compact sedans. Socar has gained popularity from young consumers because its fare system was based on the distance traveled. 

According to the state-funded Korea Transport Institute, South Korea's mobility market will reach 600 billion won by 2022.
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