Lunchtime Links: How Zipcar’s Buyout Benefits an Industry

Could Avis' acquisition of Zipcar mean good things for the CarSharing Association? Also: what's in store for consumer tech in 2013.

Zipcar, a car-sharing service often seen in major cities, is cool and transformative, and now, with its acquisition by Avis, it has a reach to match its potential.

We take a look at Zipcar’s business model and recent acquisition in today’s Lunchtime Links:

Avis and Zipcar sitting in a tree… Yesterday, Avis Budget Group announced its acquisition of the car-sharing service Zipcar for $500 million. Zipcar has over 760,000 members, with locations spread throughout 20 cities in the United States, Canada, and Europe. In the last few years, the company has expanded its reach, gone public, and transformed how people approach transportation. Wired‘s article, “Why the Zipcar-Avis Deal Means You’ll Finally Be Able to Give Up Your Car,” looks at the acquisition as an opportunity for the Zipcar brand to expand its roots and become more mainstream. And Zipcar may not be alone here, either: The CarSharing Association, whose members (including Zipcar’s smaller competitors) may gain from the growth that the merger allows for Zipcar.

2013 will be good for tech consumers (a.k.a. everyone): What tech trends are you most excited about in 2013? We’re all on the lookout for what new technologies will take shape in 2013. Wall Street Journal columnist Walter S. Mossberg has some theories of his own. According to his article in WSJ Online, personal technology will become cheaper and smarter. From mobile devices to smart TVs, Mossberg touches all trends on the consumer tech horizon for 2013. Hint: Expect mobile devices to flourish. Though these trends are consumer-oriented, Associations Now’s Ernie Smith notes that tech’s consumerization has a big impact on business users, with many consumers bringing their mobile devices to work.

Pen and paper were so 2012: Are you prepared to handle a paperless lifestyle? The Paperless Coalition, a group of six cloud-hosting firms (including Google Drive, HelloFax, and Expensify) thinks you can. The coalition’s “Paperless 2013” initiative urges everyone to ditch the pen and paper in 2013. By relying on cloud management and online programs to store your work and handle your finances, you’ll reduce the carbon footprint that daily paper transactions produce every day. HelloFax CEO Joseph Walla told Mashable the initiative is perfect for traveling workers, who depend on mobile devices to complete their routine tasks.

What cool stuff have you been reading today? Let us know in the comments.

(photo by tvol/Flickr)

Anita Ferrer

By Anita Ferrer

Anita Ferrer is a contributor to Associations Now. MORE

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