As we all know, legacy IT systems are the major stumbling block to new initiatives from our business folk. And I was reminded once more this week how the business can ask some pretty crazy stuff from IT. Here in the UK, there is a new business called Whipcar, which is a crowd-sourced rental car model.

Reduced to it’s basics, you rent a car from a street near you through an intermediary website. The model is about leveraging spare capacity in the existing car market by renting the car out when it’s not needed. This works well in large metropolitan cities such as London when a car is seldom used on a daily basis. With Whipcar, you can “sweat your asset” for the periods when you don’t need the car. One of the principles is that you are likely to be more careful with your neighbor's car than with some faceless global car rental company, and so the rentee has little to worry about. But insurance is still a requirement.

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