Wrench: Bridgestone invests in US mobile service & tech firm
Bridgestone Americas has made a ten per cent minority investment in Wrench, a US-based mobile vehicle services and technology company. According to Bridgestone, the new partnership will accelerate both companies’ ability to meet the needs of car owners with best-in-class technology in the rapidly growing mobile vehicle inspection, repair and maintenance market.
The partnership paves the way for Bridgestone and Wrench to explore synergies in their service offerings, including pairing Bridgestone’s more than 2,200 company-owned automotive service centres with Wrench’s complementary mobile services marketplace. Offerings currently available through the Wrench platform include on-site automotive maintenance, access to roadside and towing, vehicle detailing, and the Lemon Squad used-vehicle inspection service.
“With the rise of e-commerce and on-demand services, consumer preferences for car maintenance and car care are changing,” says Brian Goldstine, president of mobility solutions, Bridgestone Americas. “Wrench, combined with our company-owned retail stores and affiliated dealer partners, will create a truly world-class service platform that gives consumers trusted automotive service with added convenience and flexibility.”
Bridgestone and Wrench will launch their initial integration plans later this year, allowing Bridgestone retail stores to plug into Wrench as a referral business. Wrench customers will be able to book advanced vehicle service appointments at their local Firestone Complete Auto Care store, and existing Bridgestone retail customers will also have the opportunity to book future mobile service appointments, powered by Wrench.
“Wrench provides a technology-forward solution pairing convenience with a comprehensive suite of vehicle maintenance, repair and inspections services.” said Ed Petersen, chief executive officer and co-founder of Wrench. “Our partnership with Bridgestone will help accelerate the industry’s digital transformation. This allows both companies to expand our customer offerings, while growing our technologies and vehicle care expertise together.”
Bridgestone notes that this investment is an example of its pursuit of concierge services for personal mobility and fleet customers, which also includes the recently launched RESOLV platform for subscription-based vehicle maintenance, and the company’s Firestone Direct mobile tyre and service business.