Whim looks to expand after 2.5m trips in year one

Alyssa Clementi

Whim, the “mobility as a service” transportation app launched in 2017 by MaaS Global, reporrts that it has seen 2.5m trips in its first year. MaaS Global, which is based out of Helsinki, Finland, has since expanded Whim’s mobile application services to Birmingham, UK and Antwerp, Belgium. Beginning next year, the company intends to spread Whim to 12 cities across the US, Europe, and Asia.

Whim allows customers to gain access to multiple forms of mobility, including taxis, city bikes, public transport and rental cars. Users can pay for Whim via a monthly subscription or have the option to “pay as you go”.

During its first year, Whim operated solely out of Helsinki, proving to be particularly convenient for city dwellers, with 120,000 city bike trips taken. Since Whim was created, MaaS Global has been recognized with 6 awards for innovation in transportation technology, and was recently announced as one of the finalists of The Circulars 2019, the world’s premier circular economy award program.

“Disruptive technology trends are changing the way we travel, and it is not sustainable or in the future even possible, that everyone will own their own car. People have started to think about their choices in transportation and many have switched the family’s second car to more environmentally-friendly public transport or city bikes,” said Sampo Hietanen, chief executive officer and founder of MaaS Global. “By making the Whim offering as wide as possible to eventually include all means of transport, we will offer people the ability to move freely when and wherever they like, while also majorly affecting city carbon emissions in the long run.”

Lauri Suokannas, head of business development from Taxi Helsinki, said: “During our partnership with MaaS Global over the past year, we’ve seen about 100 000 taxi trips managed seamlessly through the Whim app. We see the enormous possibilities their subscription model has for scaling globally and truly disrupting the transportation industry."

“During the first year, we concentrated on building trust among our users and improving the service and the user experience based on the user feedback," Hietanen added. "Next year, we have several new partners lined up and many new city launches in the plans, including Singapore and many European and North American cities. We exceeded our expectations for the first year in Helsinki, so looking at our plans for next year, it will be exciting to see where MaaS Global and the whole MaaS industry have developed one year onwards."