WILLER & KDDI jointly offer "mobi" (flat rate unlimited rides on-demand service)
26 January, 2022

A joint venture to deliver new mobility experiences in solving social challenges—

KDDI CORPORATION and WILLER, Inc. will come together to jointly provide "mobi" service, a fixed rate unlimited rides, area on-demand service from January 2022.

The two companies will establish a joint venture named Community Mobility Co., Ltd. (WILLER 51%, KDDI 49%), with operations commencing from 1 April 2022. This strategic partnership demonstrates the strong synergies between the two companies in combining mobility services and communications to solve social and transport challenges in rural and urban areas. The joint venture is a lynchpin for scaling and expanding the innovative mobility service nationwide to provide new mobility experiences, and support digital transformation in the transportation industry.

Today, many young parents face challenges in transporting their children to and from school. Demand for short-distance transportation is also on the rise as more time is spent near home due to the paradigm behavioral shift brought about by the pandemic.

In addition, there has been an increase in the number of elderly who return their driving licenses, with the statistics number indicating a whopping eight times more when comparing 2020 to 2011 (*1). Meanwhile every year, up to 1,000 km bus routes has to be discontinued in regional cities due to decrease in the number of users (*2). With increasing anxiety over the lack of transportation means and freedom of mobility especially among the elderly, resolving transportation issues for a sustainable and inclusive urban development is pivotal.

WILLER has presented many innovative solutions by value adding and introducing IT marketing systems to current transportation services, including on buses and trains. Knowing how a lack of "one-mile" transportation service can be a setback in a connected and seamless social transportation system, WILLER launched the “mobi” in June 2021, a mobility service with unlimited rides within the “2 km radius from home” for the community.

As a telecommunications carrier, KDDI has been working on regional development using digital technology through KDDI Sustainable Action, in its SDGs initiatives towards 2030. With norms in transportation shifted due to digitalization, KDDI aims to connect with the local communities via mobility, based on the concept of "transforming mobility into exciting experiences."

Through this one-mile “mobi” transportation service, the two companies aim to solve regional transportation challenges by offering stress-free travel option, increase outing opportunities that create interactions among families and community, and contribute to the revitalization of neighborhoods and richer lifestyles.

■ Service Overview
This service is a flat rate, unlimited rides area on-demand mobility service based on the concept of "community mobility" whereby people come together to connect, thus creating new communities. Vehicles can be dispatched via the app or phone call. The AI routing (*3) capability in the app determines the optimal route based on road and booking conditions so that customers can travel efficiently from pick-up location to the destination within the 2km radius service areas. As the service is operated by regular professional drivers, children and elderly can ride with a peace of mind.

Available to fulfil a wide variety of purposes, such as picking and dropping children off at tuition centers, grocery shopping at slightly further stores, for family members dining out together, and a means of transport for family members who do not have a driving license like children or elderly, mobi brings new value in transportation and provides mobility freedom for everyday travel.

The joint venture will develop services tailored to the needs of communities by leveraging on WILLER's unique IT marketing system and insights in transportation operations, together with KDDI's cooperation with local governments and data utilization know-hows. Collaborations with KidZania and other corporations by offering free transportation to and from their facilities are also in the plan.

(*1) National Police Agency, Driver's License Statistics https://www.npa.go.jp/publications/statistics/koutsuu/menkyo/r02/r02_main.pdf
(*2) Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism https://www.mlit.go.jp/policy/shingikai/content/001326816.pdf
(*3) A service in which AI (artificial intelligence) calculates the optimal route and travel time based on the customer's reservation status (boarding and alighting location, time of usage) and facilitates optimal vehicle assignment and operation.

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