San Francisco-based HiGear, the private car-sharing club for luxury and sports autos that closed its doors at the start of the year after several vehicle thefts, today announced that it has been acquired by Rent2Buy, a car-sharing service.
Rent2Buy is a new car-sharing platform that facilitates the purchase of the cars that consumers share or rent through the program, allowing consumers to get familiar with the car before they buy. For individual car owners and dealers, Rent2buy helps generate rental or sharing income on cars waiting to be sold, including the hundreds of cars often found sitting on dealer lots. The acquisition of HiGear adds to the Rent2Buy platform and provides additional access to consumers and car inventory in the San Francisco and Los Angeles markets.
Rent2Buy was started by automotive veteran Moti Kahana, founder of Automoti, and e-commerce executive Todd Daum, formerly of Overture Inc., Yahoo and TrueCar. The price of the acquisition has not been disclosed.
Kahana and Daum have more than 35 years of combined experience in the automotive rental and online industries. They previously founded Automoti, an online business that offered a rent-to-buy service acquired by Hertz in 2009. Advisers to Rent2Buy include current and past executives from top car rental companies such as National, Hertz, Budget and Alamo Rent-a-Car.
“The addition of HiGear will make our service much more valuable, adding a large group of loyal customers and high-end inventory,” Kahana said. “Given our 35 years of experience in the automotive rental industry, we believe we are positioned to resolve the complexity around peer-to-peer car sharing and make this a valuable, mainstream service.”
As of Feb. 28, HiGear members will once again be able to use the high end car-sharing service as before, following a pause of the service late last year to ensure appropriate consumer protection tools were in place. Rent2Buy will be implementing a new set of procedures to make car sharing easier and more accessible to the average consumer.
Todd Daum, the new CEO of Rent2Buy, adds “collaborative consumption is growing rapidly, and we believe the combination of HiGear and Rent2Buy will create a unique platform successfully serving all areas of car sharing and buying.”
For a blog on HiGear's shutdown, click here.