When we are free to move, anything is possible

November 22, 2021

Whether getting you across town or across the room, Toyota has become the global leader in the quest to create universally available safe, reliable, and convenient means of mobility.

Spending more than one million dollars an hour on research and development, Toyota is transforming how we move while also expanding access to mobility. Throughout Toyota, we have a vision to make mobility accessible to everyone: whether developing wearable tech that allows the blind to navigatein-home robot assistants for the elderly and disabled; or autonomous delivery vehicles for goods such as groceries or medicine, our story is about much more than our traditional cars and trucks.

Mobility as a Service

So, how does Toyota Financial Services (TFS), the financial arm of the world’s largest mobility company, fit into the picture? Through its Strategic Innovation (SI) team, TFS supports Toyota’s belief that we should do more than help you go places on the road – we can help you go places in life.

Traditional vehicle ownership and how we use our vehicles continue to evolve. As we introduce new mobility products for the home, the workplace, and public spaces, maximizing access to these products through nontraditional financing models will be key for TFS’ continued leadership in the financial services and fintech spaces. As we revolutionize mobility, we must also revolutionize the means by which we ensure increased access to these products and services and all their benefits. In addition to identifying gaps and improving efficiencies to our current products and services, we need to seek out opportunities that haven’t yet been recognized or fully explored. The SI team brings together tremendous resources with people, partnerships, and technology to capitalize on our respective talents.

Identifying and exploring solutions in fintech

The SI team focuses on innovation, incubation, and then incorporation. We launched our Incubation Lab to help Toyota identify and develop bold new solutions for our customers, dealers, and our communities.  But to succeed, we can’t do it alone. Through the Incubation Lab, we connect the strength and leadership of Toyota with the innovative mindset and agility of fintech startups to create long-term value for our customers, stakeholders, and society at large.

It’s this process that has allowed us to develop incredible partnerships that benefit customers and dealers. For example:

·       Working with Feonix Mobility Rising, we piloted a program to increase accessibility to transportation for the elderly and disabled. For many, non-emergency medical transportation (NEMT) (such as getting to the pharmacy, work, or the grocery store), can be a daily struggle. Providing mobility options for NEMT improves patient health and decreases health costs.  We want to ensure customers are getting more than “just a ride.” We want to ensure both reliable and properly outfitted vehicles as well as an easy-to-use and affordable system staffed with best-in-class drivers.  Having both a smartphone app and a live call center acknowledges different comfort levels customers and caretakers may have with technology.  Our ability to secure lower-cost, newer model used Toyota vehicles, means we can bring operating expenses down for the program without sacrificing dependability. Working with health care providers, community health centers, and caretakers, we are helping seniors and the disabled live more independent and productive lives.

·       Our KINTO collaboration, a convenient hourly, daily, or weekly vehicle rental program provides nontraditional access to vehicles for rideshare and delivery drivers or anyone looking for a fast and easy short-term vehicle rental. The program is a true win-win for customers and Toyota dealers as the program takes advantage of the used vehicle inventory on a participating dealer’s lot, thereby, creating a new revenue stream.

·       Our Subscribe + Drive all-inclusive subscription service offers an alternative to car ownership or leasing. Through the app, customers choose a Toyota vehicle and where and when to have it delivered. This all-inclusive program includes insurance, maintenance, and registration with just one monthly fee. Filling a niche market, such a subscription program is ideal for anyone looking for the ultimate in flexibility while also creating an additional revenue stream for local participating dealers.

 

We’re looking for you

It’s an exciting time to be part of this new venture, expanding our mission and building the foundation that will support greater access to mobility for all. We are looking for companies in the post seed phase with a working product or proven service solution which addresses a market need and truly delivers value to our customers. We believe the companies we invest in should reflect the diversity of the populations we seek to serve and who value and celebrate the differences that make us unique.

If you are a company or ecosystem builder ready to explore getting your solution in front of the Strategic Innovation team, we want to hear from you!