Swapp is a new Hungarian startup that allows you to use and switch cars on a monthly subscription basis, without a term or loyalty period. Swapp offers a competitively priced but much more flexible alternative to car buying and leasing. The service is being piloted with a fleet of nearly 100 cars, including environmentally friendly, premium, compact and family cars, and is currently available in Budapest, but both the range and the partner network are being expanded.
The current network of fleet partners includes leasing companies, car rental companies, car dealerships and private investors operating cars for this purpose. The founders aim to increase the number of cars available several times over in the short term and to expand beyond the capital.
The service is simple to use. After a quick registration on Swapp's online interface, the user selects the car that suits him, the system deducts the first monthly subscription fee and blocks the deposit from the user's credit card. Swapp staff will then deliver the selected car to the customer's home in Budapest free of charge. A car can be used for any length of time, but for a minimum of one month. If the subscriber wishes to change or terminate the subscription, he/she must notify Swapp 14 days in advance. Swapp will also help with pick-up and drop-off.
Swapp's monthly subscription fee starts at around HUF 100,000, meaning that it aims to be a serious competitor to both long-term rentals and car leasing, but with a much more flexible solution. Swapp's service is aimed at a variety of audiences. For example, it aims to provide an alternative for people who do not want to or cannot afford to buy a car in one lump sum, or who do not want to commit to a leasing arrangement for many years. It may also be of interest to those who need a car on a regular but not permanent basis. Based on Swapp's experience in Vienna, the target group also includes members of the "Airbnb generation", for whom car ownership is not important but the experience is, as well as car enthusiasts who want to keep trying out new cars, and families who have a car but need a second one for shorter periods. Finally, they want to appeal to small businesses, which would prefer to pay a car pre-payment as a cost rather than a multi-million euro excess.
Zsolt Poprócsi, CEO and former head of Bolt in Hungary;
Kristóf Wossala, Head of Expansion, former Regional Director of music streaming service Deezer;
Zoltán Fekete, Chief Operating Officer, former head of the Hungarian and Swedish markets at Uber.
Tibor Moldován is responsible for Swapp's Budapest operations, having built the leasing company from zero to hundreds of cars as Chief Operating Officer together with Zsolt Poprócsi.
In addition to the founders' own capital, Swapp has so far raised over €1 million, most of it from angel investors in the Middle East, and a smaller part from Czech, German, Hungarian and Polish investors.
Swapp launched its test operation in Vienna in March this year, where the number of users has been gradually increasing since the lifting of restrictions due to the epidemic. Based on the positive experience there, the founders decided to launch the service in Budapest as well.