Will Avis Destroy Zipcar?

Modern Energy Roundup - January 14, 2013

Written by Brian Hicks
Posted January 14, 2013

Zipcar's board failed to take all necessary steps to ensure that shareholders will receive the maximum value for their shares”

That's what lawyers said in a recent filing against the company that alleges the recent Avis acquisition of Zipcar shortchanges Zipcar shareholders.

I'm not an antitrust expert, so I have no idea if this filing has any teeth. Although in a recent Reuters poll, eight out of nine antitrust experts said they expect U.S. regulators to approve the deal.

Another complaint from some shareholders, as well as Zipcar customers is that Avis, in keeping with an outdated corporate approach that doesn't work with the type of folks who typically sign up for a service like Zipcar, could ruin the customer service and experience of the carsharing company.

I'd like to think the marketing folks over at Avis aren't stupid enough to screw with a formula that clearly works. But who knows? It wouldn't be the first time a behemoth corporation has fallen down such a rabbit hole. Remember Newscorp's tragic acquisition of Myspace? What a complete train wreck that was.

Of course, if Avis does go down the same path of incompetence, there are other carsharing startups out there that would be happy to fill the void. I guess we'll just have to wait and see.