1. BMW i announces strategic partnership with NOW! Innovations

    BMW i Mobility Services has signed an agreement with the Estonian-born tech company NOW! Innovations, a new strategic partner for providing mobile payment and billing solutions. It sees BMW i extending the scope of ParkNow beyond parking garages to include on-street parking as well. ParkNow is an electronic mobile parking service that allows users to reserve and pay for their parking place in advance.

    Joachim Hauser, Director of BMW i Mobility Services, comments: “Now! Innovations is a perfect match for us. The current scope of our ParkNow service is off-street parking. With the on-street capabilities of Now! Innovations we will soon be able to strategically enhance our product offer and be even more attractive for our customers. The integration of on-street parking is a major step in creating a one-stop parking experience. Given our investments in Park@MyHouse and Parkopedia, we have a sound parking portfolio.”

    NOW! Innovations is a global provider of mobile payment and billing solutions operating on three continents and in eight countries. The company has developed a flexible and easy-to-use billing and payment platform for parking services. The NOW! Parking Platform is based on the SaaS concept. It enables cities and parking operators not only to add mobile phone payments to their existing parking system either independently or as an integrated approach, but also to implement the Intelligent Parking System (IPS). IPS enables parking asset management and boosts revenues and efficiency, resulting in lower costs and less environmental damage.

    The NOW! Parking Platform offers the widest selection of command channels: SMS, QR codes, IVR, NFC, RFID, LPR/ANPR. Its functionality includes dynamic billing mechanisms and multiple payment sources: credit/debit cards, pre-paid cards, customer accounts, direct debit order, PayPal, etc. The platform manages an unlimited number of parking zones, payment rate policies and customer classes. It has the highest functionality and the lowest cost on the market.

    Üllar Jaaksoo, NOW! Innovations CEO: “In the era of smartphones, applications and platforms we are fascinated by the opportunity to improve the daily lives of all motorists. Seamless parking payments and personalised services are our ultimate goal. In partnership with such a visionary company as the BMW Group we will have a greater chance to accommodate the transition from analogue to digital parking. We are looking forward to providing a game-changing solution for BMW Mobility Services.”

    About ParkNow

    The electronic mobile parking service ParkNow allows users to book their parking space in advance according to price and location. They are then guaranteed the space at the lowest possible price based on the driver’s personal preferences. When looking for a parking space, customers can either use the ParkNow app for the iPhone and Android smartphones or reserve and pay for a parking space on the ParkNow website before being navigated directly to the spot. The service reduces both the time spent searching for a parking space and the environmental damage caused by harmful emissions. Currently there are more than 35 ParkNow stations set up in and around San Francisco. ParkNow is a joint venture between BMW i Ventures and Urban Mobility LLC.

    About BMW i Ventures

    The venture capital company BMW i Ventures pursues long-term strategic partnerships in the areas of e-mobility, navigation, parking, car sharing and intermodality. Beyond ParkNow, its portfolio comprises two further parking services: Park@MyHouse is an innovative online marketplace that links up vacant parking facilities with drivers seeking a parking space. Parkopedia is an app for finding parking spaces in 30 countries and draws on a database of thousands of parking spaces and parking garages.

    BMW i Ventures is part of the BMW i brand, which stands for visionary vehicles and mobility services, inspirational design and a new understanding of premium that is more strongly defined in terms of sustainability.