With an eye on the commitment it announced to neutralize its carbon emissions by 2028, the Unidas car rental company set aside R$370 million to acquire 2,000 electric cars this year, 400 of which are hybrid models.
With the purchase, the company will have 2,600 vehicles available to its customers both in the fleet outsourcing area and in the rental segment.
The company has already closed purchase contracts with automakers such as Renault, BMW and Stellantis, which owns brands such as Fiat and Peugeot.
According to the head of the fleet area, Breno Davis, this initiative is the first of a series of major moves that the company has taken to electrify its portfolio.
Unidas aims to expand its electric car fleet to 80,000 in the next five years. This initiative should add up to approximately R$ 15 billion in investments by 2027, taking into account the current values of the vehicles.
More than reducing its carbon footprint, Unidas wants to be a protagonist in the adoption of electric vehicles. “We understand that someone needs to assume this role and lose the fear of investing in this market”, says Davis.
However, the challenges in this sector are great. For now, there are still few charging points spread across Brazil, as well as the resale of vehicles – responsible for a large share of the sector’s revenue and profitability – still falters due to the lack of cars and also the urban infrastructure itself.
It is not by chance that Unidas plans to install 1,000 charging points by 2027, in order to meet the demand it is creating. This is an initiative that the company is already doing with its corporate fleet management and outsourcing customers.
According to the executive, depending on the company’s request, they install chargers in company buildings or even in executive homes.
And this should be the market that the company will pursue in the short term. This is because the cars available in the rental segment are still for customers who want to experience the possibility of driving an electric car. After all, the values are higher than renting a combustion vehicle.
. In December, the Administrative Council for Economic Defense (Cade) approved the merger of the operation by three votes to two, but with a series of bitter remedies for the company.
Among the measures that companies will need to take is the sale of all Unidas assets in the leasing segment. The company’s main business, fleet management, was spared.
Faced with so many bureaucracies ahead, does it make sense for Unidas to make this move? For Davis, yes. Unidas received the EV100 seal, a global initiative of companies that are committed to the transition from combustion vehicles to electric models by 2030.
In addition, according to the executive, the initiative is part of the ESG agenda and helps to generate value for customers. “Even though we don’t have access to business, we know the Localiza gang and I’m sure that, with the merger taking place, this agenda gains even more strength with the new company”, he says.
For Leo Monteiro, an analyst at brokerage Ativa Investimentos for vehicle rental, the initiative to invest in electric cars makes sense at a time when ESG is already starting to price assets around the world.
And, despite the drop of almost 20% that Unidas had in 2021, Ativa recommends buying the share. “The car rental market in Brazil is still in its infancy, especially in the management and outsourcing segment, which has a higher margin and in which Unidas is the leader”, says Monteiro. The information is from the newspaper. The State of São Paulo.
Reference: CNN Brasil