Case Study of Zipcar

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Response of ZIPCAR

Yongjun Zhao

Submitted to
Dr. Keith Harman
Oklahoma Baptist University International Graduate School
in partial fulfillment of
the requirements for
Information Technology

This is an interesting, short case about how a new type of rental Car Company is able to operate in a completely new business model, as compared to other rental car companies, and embrace Web 2.0 technologies to gain further competitive advantage. The main purpose of this case is that let us know how information resources are used strategically in context of the Porter’s five forces model, and how information resources can be used to alter the value chain.

In this case, I will discuss four questions.
* Analyze the business model of Zipcar using Porter’s five forces model. * Discuss the synergy between the business strategy of Zipcar and information technology. * What network effects are part of the strategy of Zipcar? How do they add value? * As the CEO of Zipcar, where is your most threatening competition? What would you do to sustain a competitive advantage? It is a good case to study because I can learn how information resources are used strategically in the reality.

Response of ZIPCAR
Zipcar is a new rental car company. It is offering self-service, on-demand cars by the hour or day for personal or business needs. The low hourly and daily rates include gas, insurance, maintenance and parking. Zipcar is a self-service business, and the members’ activity ranging from reservations to billing all takes place online(DDOE). Thus, Zipcar has been very successful, with over 200,000 paying members and renting over 5,000 vehicles in 50 markets in the United States, Canada, and the UK (Mary).

Analyze the business model of Zipcar using Poter’s five forces model. Zipcar has created a model that would be difficult for other companies to imitate with its technology infrastructure and low over-head. This model...
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