Micromobility has rapidly proliferated in cities nationwide, proving to be a popular transportation option for many users. In response to the increasing demand for walking and bicycling facilities in cities and towns across the country, many jurisdictions are exploring micromobility as an alternative mode for short trips and active transportation.
Many would say we are now living in a subscription-based economy. Everything we do revolves around signing up for a service, whether it is to enjoy music on Spotify, clear our minds for meditation with Calm, job search or business development on LinkedIn Premium, or make purchases for grocery, entertainment, or any product thinkable with Amazon. It is all at our fingertips within a few clicks, sometimes even as little as 1 click. It is no surprise that the automotive industry is exploring the subscription space, as many consumers are prioritizing flexibility and ease of service for their vehicle of choice.
Before answering “What are the impacts?”, you may be wondering “What is non-emergency medical transportation (NEMT)?”. NEMT can be defined as a transportation service for individuals traveling for medical services and are not in an emergency situation but might need more assistance than a regular ride service is able to provide. Service providers will be specially trained and may be equipped to transport riders in wheelchairs, stretchers, or with other special needs. NEMT rides can also be available as a Medicaid benefit that helps people with Medicaid insurance get to and from their health care appointments. Many states have different requirements and ways on how this benefit is delivered. An individual would need to be pre-approved and eligible to use the benefit. Another way the term NEMT is used in this space is a way to fill other transportation gaps that various demographic groups have. An area of growing focus is to provide rides for social determinants of health (SDOH) such as trips to the grocery store or to a senior center. In addition to Medicaid, Medicare Advantage Plans can provide NEMT benefits to their insured population and other funding comes through local/federal grant funds, or even by hospitals earmarking money for transportation.
Stacey Miller, senior manager at TFS Strategic Innovation is tasked with bringing innovative ideas to life through incubation and experimentation. Blake Towery, senior analyst in the Talent Development Group at Toyota got an opportunity to chat with Stacey and learn about her journey at Toyota and saw innovation happening at Toyota through her lens. In her conversation, Stacey also shared key insights on Innovation and Toyota Way.
This week we met with Jason Zahorik, Group Manager of KINTO Share at Toyota Financial Services (TFS) and Paul Hirsch, Founder and CEO of Launch Mobility (LM), Inc. Their partnership began when the TFS Strategic Innovation team was exploring mobility solutions and Paul was doing the same as an up and coming start up. Paul, having worked for Toyota Motor Sales previously, understood the territory in which Jason was navigating which contributed to their successful collaboration.
Startup Champions Network (SCN) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide builders of entrepreneurial ecosystems the connections, resources, and professional development they need to cultivate thriving and inclusive communities. They believe that thriving and inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystems should exist in all communities in order to drive economic opportunity and independence for all. We at Strategic Innovation saw the opportunity for a strategic alignment with SCN and connected with Trey Bowles, Thomas Chapman and Kristin Leutz.
In August 2020, we launched a short-term campaign with SCN that allowed us to make connections with several ecosystem builders and startups. Toyota is planning future calls for partnerships and hoping to establish many successful relationships and endeavors. Watch the video in this post to learn more about Tom Chapman’s experience working with Toyota Financial Services.