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Driving change: how a Gold Coast tech entrepreneur is revolutionising car ownership

What Outbound does

Outbound installs shared electric vehicles in residential, commercial and tourist properties, like hotels, for the exclusive use of those who live, work or are staying there. It’s all facilitated through the Outbound app as an on demand car service – a bit like Uber, but +the user does the driving.

The Current Landscape

The ‘shared mobility’ concept is catching on around the world and starting to find a place in Australia. Property owners and managers are realising that people want convenient access to premium electric vehicles without the cost, which can be as much as $25,000 per year, and that’s where Outbound comes in.

The post pandemic workplace, with employers looking to entice staff back to office working, also presents an opportunity for Outbound, with workers encouraged to walk or catch public transport into a CBD, and simply take one of the onsite EVs if they need to go somewhere for a business meeting or run a personal errand, thus saving on vehicle and parking costs.

The startup is looking to disrupt the car hire industry, so the likes of Hertz and Thrifty. There are other carsharing concepts in the market, such as GoGet, albeit with slightly different models.

Company Birth Story

Luke Rust is an expat Brit who’s relocated to the Gold Coast with his Australian wife and young family. After seeing the concept work successfully in his native UK, and other parts of the Europe, saw an opportunity to revolutionise car ownership in his adopted country, and help reduce people’s dependency on their private vehicles, which often sit idle 96% of the time.

The Solution

Unlike other carsharing providers, such as GoGet, Outbound is attached to a property (i.e. residential, commercial, tourist), so is intended to be a return trip for the user. The concept lends itself to electric vehicles as users simply pay an hourly rate, and are only asked to plug the car back in when they’re finished (i.e. don’t have to refuel it before returning). This gives users certainly they won’t be ‘stung’ with any additional or hidden costs.

The Team Culture

Luke Rust has partnered with development heavyweight, Martin Leuenberger, and lawyer, Clayton Glenister, to found Outbound with a goal of a bringing a sustainable, forward thinking solution to mobility in the development sector. Luke himself, despite being the role of CEO, still personally responds to users’ questions on the Outbound app, often at odd hours of the morning.

A founder quote

“It just seems silly to me to have a car, which is costing you a fortune, just sitting there losing value. “But what if we didn’t have to own a car? “What if we flipped the whole notion of car ownership on its head and worked out a new way to still get around without a giant ‘money hole’ parked in our garages most of the time? “We might be a while away from people getting rid of their cars en masse but that’s certainly the idea into the future.” - -Luke Rust, Outbound CEO

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