Leveraging data helps companies stay competitive and ensure future growth. And companies know it. In fact, companies around the world are devoting significant resources to new technologies to gain a competitive advantage. But are they making the necessary investments to achieve their goals? Stellantis answered this question positively at CES 2023 by announcing the creation of Mobilisights, a business unit entirely dedicated to the growth of the company's Data activities and associated B2B services. Mobilisights will leverage Stellantis' Connected Vehicle Data, which is expected to reach 34 million by 2030.
The announcement seems technological but it conceals eminently business issues and a new positioning of the brand on the market. Let's decipher the role played by data in this new positioning.
A new Ecosystem
Mobilisights' data and products will be accessible to a diverse set of stakeholders, which will include private sector companies, utilities, higher education institutions and research institutes. In other words, based on this data asset, Stellantis wants to strategically place itself at the center of an ecosystem; that is, at the heart of the interactions that allow all stakeholders to improve or create innovative services. What kind of value will emerge? Which actors will perceive this value and seize it? What monetization strategies can be used? Answering these questions through theory is difficult and would not be very productive, because the value will be revealed through use.
Indeed, innovation comes first and foremost from ecosystems that favor diversity of cultures, skills and technical expertise. When the ecosystem is well thought out, it forms a sounding board for capturing weak signals and the mood of the consumer. When it also opens up to suppliers, partners, and academics, it becomes a forum for identifying the innovations of tomorrow.
A new business model
The main value of Data being a utility value, Stellantis will seek to share Data widely to create new sources of revenue (generate about 20 billion euros of annual revenue by 2030). While keeping the control of the source, in this case the data collected from the vehicles, or more precisely the conditions of access to these data, to its interfaces and its products. With this positioning, Mobilisights will be able to compete with specialized actors in many sectors: software suppliers, maps or insurers. Because to exploit efficiently, the Data of the sensors and the other Data collected by the connected vehicles can be at the origin of a wide range of services and applications. The uses can be multiple, either in the manufacturer's core business (performance, vehicle maintenance, driving assistance) or in a parallel industry (risk management on the road, pay-as-you-go insurance policy, targeted advertising, ...).
Thanks to this future data heritage, Mobilisights can also position itself on societal and environmental aspects: making cities more intelligent, optimizing its customers' travels and even reducing pollution. Here again, we touch on an important aspect of Data Management: the future value of data. The data producer is not always in the best position to find an economic value in the use of its data. Sometimes, a third party's view is needed to identify the full potential.
Data protection and use
On the governance and data protection side, this new positioning will undoubtedly lead to debates about data ownership and use. Who owns the data? What consents for what purposes? Can the data be transmitted to trigger a remote service?
This raises the legal question of data ownership. Location, driving behavior and license plate are considered as personal data that identify the owner of the vehicle. The ownership of the data is therefore with the driver.
The CNIL has taken a position in its "Compliance Pack: Connected Vehicles and Personal Data" which details the different scenarios. Legislation is advancing at the same time as technology. A real battle over the use of data is therefore to be expected. But this example reveals a significant aspect of our digital society: Data is everywhere, it is everyone's business and all professions (like the legal aspects which will be preponderant in tomorrow's Data activities).
Finally, the topic of collective onboarding, the transformation of the company's organizations, women and men; is a topic in its own right. The company plans to rely on 4,500 engineers by 2024, including a thousand from within the company, who will be retrained in a "Software and Data" academy created for the occasion. We can see here that the success of this business transformation depends heavily on the ability of employees to adapt to these changes. On the HR side, Data can be a real opportunity for companies to offer new career paths and thus retain talent. However, they must be properly supported in this transformation.
Once again, Stellantis shows us that the company has the strengths and skills to become data-driven.