Interviews
28 Aug 19

Start-Up of the Year CarPay Diem: "We are the largest mobile fuel platform in Europe"

CarPayDiem looks back on its second-prize win at the 2017 Smart Mobility Start-Up Awards.

We are approaching our Smart Mobilility Start-Up Awards in November in Estoril. While looking for new startups to apply, we have a look at how our previous winners are doing. What have they achieved since their victory and where are they going? The fifth in the series is the second-prize winner of 2017, CarPayDiem, and CEO Frédéric Stiernon gives us an update.

Introduce CarPayDiem in 1 sentence.

CarPayDiem provides a service that can be integrated in any mobile app or any connected car and it allows this app or connected car to activate any fuel pump and manage the payment from inside the car. 

How does CarPayDiem serve fleet managers in particular? 

We are able to serve fleet managers on different aspects. First thing is that we are now digitalising a fuel card, knowing that fleet managers generally provide fuel cards to their drivers. Instead of charging a plastic fuel card they will now be able to fuel via an app branded with their fleet logo and be able to fuel in fuel stations that are partnering with CarPayDiem. 

This project was launched a few weeks ago and the first fleet will test it after the summer; around October or November. 

How did CarPayDiem grow since the Smart Mobility Start-Up Awards? 

When we were participating, we were not yet in production. We had the idea and the platform, but we were not active yet. Now, we have several costumers. 

On the driver's side we have all the drivers that have a bank account with the Belgian bank Belfius that has integrated the CarPayDiem app in the banking app. So all Belfius customers can pay for fuel with the app at for instance Lukoil stations in Belgium. 

And Belgian supermarket chain Colruyt has integrated the CarPayDiem service in its mobile ‘Extra’ app as well. So all the customers of Lukoil can fill up at the DATS24 network in Belgium as well. 

We went in production in mid-January. Since then we sold more than 6 million litres of fuel through the CarPayDiem platform; this means more than 175,000 refills in less than 6 months. This makes CarPayDiem the largest mobile fuel platform in Europe. 

We see some numbers form other companies and we know now that CarPayDiem is the largest solutions in numbers of refills and volume sold through the app. 

We are active in Belgium and Luxemburg and now expanding in France, the Netherlands, Germany and UK. 

There is a real acceleration in our business. We have also signed some partnerships with telematics companies and car makers that will be announced after the summer. They are now testing the CarPayDiem app directly in the dashboard of the car and directly connected with the telematics solution. For instance, for truck companies, the fleet managers will be able to follow the ride and advise the driver to fuel in specific fuel stations based on the price.  

In addition, there are two fuel networks that will start cooperating with us after the summer and another bank is starting as well. We are definitely growing!

Where do you see CarPayDiem in five years' time? 

Our goal is to become the standard platform allowing any device to connect to any fuel pump. We expect to be present in every European country in five years' time – thanks to the digital fuel card – and allow every driver from every connected car to take fuel everywhere in Europe from our network. 

Remarkably, since our participating in the Fleet Europe event we have met several very large fuel networks that saw us at the start as a competitor because they make their own app to allow drivers to take fuel of their network. But now they see that actually CarPayDiem could provide them with additional customers going to their station and providing the same user experience but without the marketing cost on their side. 

We take care of the marketing of our partners and our partners provide the community of drivers; and they are pushing the service towards the drivers. We are no competitors, we are a new channel for distributing fuel in their fuel networks. 

We also allow the fuel networks to display specific offers or even customised offers to the drivers on the mobile phone when they are in a fuel station. We bring new drivers in the fuel stations and we allow the fuel stations to communicate with them to increase the sales inside the shop and in terms of fuel. So, we are no competitors.

How did the Award help your business grow? 

The Award was important for us because it was a recognition of the fact that the market was waiting for our solution. We were ranked second in this contest and we were not even in production yet. 

But based on the result of the award we were convinced that we were in the good direction, and as soon as we had the first customers, we saw that our solution was good for the market and that there was a very strong adoption.

There is more than 85% of recurrent usage of our platform. We observe that as soon as someone is taking fuel with our platform, they continue to take fuel with it. 

So, the Award helped us gaining recognition and it helped us to position us on the European market, since before we were mainly active on the Belgian, Benelux and French market. Now we are in contact with companies from all over the world, which is partly the success of the Fleet Europe Award. 

Could you share an insight with other Smart Mobility Start-Ups? 

Actually, I was wondering if we would participate again to the upcoming Fleet Europe Award with our B2B solution, the digital fuel card, which is much more interesting for fleet managers in particular. The advice would be to participate anyway because it was a great experience, a very positive experience for us, and a great event in Estoril. 

Do you want to play a part in the future of smart mobility? Follow into CarPayDiem’s footsteps and apply for the Smart Mobility Start Up Awards 2019 in Estoril!

Image: Frédéric Stiernon, CEO, CarPay Diem, holding his second prize at the 2017 Smart Mobility Start-Up of the Year Awards in Estoril, Portugal.

Authored by: Fien Van den steen
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