We are all taught to share as children. What happens when we become adults?
The Sharing economy is commonly defined as “the peer-to-peer-based activity of obtaining, giving, or sharing the access to goods and services, coordinated through community-based online services” *. The market is currently worth over $100 billion but it is predicted to grow to at least $335 billion by 2025*.
When we all start to realise the potential of sharing assets and services, the impact will be life changing for both the Western world and the developing countries. Not only shall it lessen our global footprint, decrease our costs, open up avenues for extra income, “it also has the potential to address long-term societal challenges such as making cities more inclusive and building social connections between groups that might otherwise never have interacted.” (Cheryl Martin, World Economic Forum writes in “Collaboration in the Cities”)
We are all aware of the consumerist society in which we live, but the time has now arrived to start becoming less throwaway and more responsible. According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations “Roughly one third of the food produced in the world for human consumption every year — approximately 1.3 billion tonnes — gets lost or wasted” *. This is a horrifying statistic and can easily be changed. There are various apps that have been created to combat this, diverting food from being unnecessarily thrown away. This is a great step in the right direction but it is still early days.
Food wastage is just one example, there are plenty more. With the rapid development of technology, we will soon be able to fully embrace sharing and start differentiating between what we actually need to personally own and what we can simply borrow or rent.
The sharing economy has been brought into the limelight with Uber and Airbnb in the last few years. Airbnb has enabled extra income for the house owner and Uber has provided a vast amount of jobs for freelancer drivers who are free to work whenever they wish. Both companies have revolutionised the providers and users lives. They have created opportunity, income and freedom for the provider, and choice, ease and security for the user. There are thousands of other companies that exist but similarly they specialise in one particular niche.
There are some major issues with all of these clever start-ups. Firstly, you must sign up to each individual company, download each individual app and give over your bank details every time. Secondly, there are so many of these apps but many are localised. Thirdly, you may incur international transaction fees and exchange rates if you are using an app in a foreign country. All of these negatives have been realised and taken into consideration for a new app called ShareRing, which has the potential to change the whole sharing economy and is due to launch in November this year.
Melbourne start-up, ShareRing, has been deemed to be ‘the Amazon of the sharing economy’. Tim Bos (CEO) recognised how fragmented the industry has become and saw its potential. It is based around blockchain technology and uses a dual token system, which means you will not incur any exchange rates or international fees. The beauty of ShareRing is that you will not need to understand any jargon to simply use it when it is launched towards the end of this year. Bos has in fact made a point of not focusing on talking about the technology side, stating that its everyday user will not need to know anything about its clever tech. All that needs to be known is that you will be able to simply sign up to one platform, have one username and password, and be able to share anything you could possibly dream of; from a car to a wedding dress to a pet sitter to food. There will also be geolocation so you will be able to source the closest asset or services to you.
ShareRing has already secured some impressive partnerships and is in line to raise $38million by the end of its ICO. BYD (Chinese based automobile company), DJI drones (market leader in drone technology), GTI Holdings (a major investment fund) are a few names to mention but ShareRing has also recently joined the new mobility consortium MOBI that consists of 70% of the top automakers of the world including BMW and Ford. This company means business.
Bos (appropriate name!) and business partner Peter David founded global carsharing platform Keaz, which has offices in Australia, Hong Kong, Vietnam and the USA. Their experience is quite apparent, as the delivery of their new venture has been impeccable.
The sharing economy is here to stay and is soon to explode. It’s an exciting time for us all. Hopefully we shall be able to turn round the drastic situation and global waste we have put on our planet. Time to practice the act of sharing that we so strongly preach to our children.
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