SOURCE: The Hertz Corporation

The Hertz Corporation

April 20, 2011 12:04 ET

Connect by Hertz Announces Free Membership and Significant Program Enhancements

No Membership Fees, More Vehicle Options, On Site Membership Kiosks, and Improved Website Capabilities

PARK RIDGE, NJ--(Marketwire - Apr 20, 2011) - Effective May 1, 2011, Connect by Hertz (www.connectbyhertz.com), Hertz's (NYSE: HTZ) global car sharing club, enhances its U.S. member benefits to include the elimination of all membership fees in the U.S.; guaranteed vehicle availability Monday through Thursday, increased vehicle options, the introduction of membership enrollment kiosks in New York City, and an enhanced member website. Hertz is the only major car sharing company to provide a 24/7 member care center, as well as proprietary in-car technology connecting members to the care center and other leading edge applications. The Company also announced today a significant expansion of its one-of-a-kind "one-way" program for Connect car sharing members.

"Because of the operational synergies between Connect and Hertz, we are now able to provide Connect members in the U.S., both current and new, the best car sharing program in the world," commented Mark P. Frissora, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, The Hertz Corporation. "The elimination of membership fees, coupled with guaranteed vehicle availability, increased vehicle options, and on site membership enrollment kiosks takes the car sharing concept to the next level. Because we are able to leverage the power of the Hertz brand, Connect by Hertz offers what no other car sharing club can: a fee-free program that provides all of the benefits of car sharing as well as convenience and flexibility from the leading global car rental company. Because of Hertz's large, nationwide rental network and 300,000-vehicle fleet, Connect is able to offer programs like one-way which other car sharing companies are unable to match."

Frissora added, "After only two years of operations, Connect has almost 30,000 members and generated $6 million of revenues in 2010, much faster growth than any car sharing company in the world. Connect was also profitable in Manhattan after year one, and our growth and profit trajectory will further accelerate with the program enhancements we are announcing today."

Connect by Hertz is the first international car sharing program to provide a fee free membership experience in the U.S. New members are no longer required to pay an enrollment fee while all current members will enjoy the financially beneficial elimination of yearly membership fees, saving up to $75 a year for new members and $50 a year for existing members.

Connect by Hertz offers members guaranteed availability, Monday through Thursday, holidays included for all its car sharing vehicles. Connect's fleet has been refreshed with new cars added to the service, including such luxury cars and SUVs as the Cadillac Escalade, Mazda CX9, and the Volvo XC90; and cars suitable for moving, including the Ford Transit Connect and the Nissan Titan pickup truck.

Connect by Hertz is also rolling out, in New York City, membership kiosks that allow new members to join Connect by Hertz car sharing on-the-spot and immediately begin using the service. If members have questions about enrollment, the membership kiosk provides personal, video communication with a live Member Care representative. The first kiosk will be available from Hertz's 55th Street location with additional Hertz locations receiving the kiosks over the coming months.

Connect by Hertz is committed to continuously improving the car sharing experience, Connect's One Way program and membership enrollment kiosks illustrate a focus on leveraging state-of-the-art technology, Connect's unrivaled ease-of-use, and convenient locations throughout New York City, to provide the ultimate car sharing program.

Connect recently introduced a newly redesigned member website, www.connectbyhertz.com, that has simplified the reservation process including one way map routing and reservations, improved the user experience with enhanced search capabilities and faster page load times, enhanced details about car makes and models, and a live twitter feed for up-to-date information about Connect by Hertz car sharing.

Connect by Hertz is also the first car sharing program to offer Metro New York members a one way program which allows members to pick up a Connect car from any of Hertz's New York City car sharing and Rent a Car locations, approximately 100 locations, including Hoboken, and drop off at another Hertz New York City location, New York City-area airports, the Hamptons, Philadelphia, and Washington DC.

Connect by Hertz car sharing has approximately 30,000 members, is available in six countries and on 54 university campuses. Connect by Hertz offers its members products and services that are unmatched in the car sharing industry, including guaranteed reservations, Monday through Thursday, including holidays; a variety of Electric Vehicles, the Chevy Volt, Nissan LEAF, and smart fortwo electric drive; an in-house Member Care Center available 24/7, 365 days a year; an in-car GPS system in every vehicle, included in the hourly rate; a fast and easy-to-use updated website; and rates as low as $5 in Manhattan.

Connect by Hertz's industry leading, propriety in-car technology provides members a safe and superior car sharing experience. Upon enrolling, members receive a smart chip enabled card which gives them keyless entry to any reserved car. In the car, a hands-free audio kit connects members to an in-house Member Care Center representative should they have questions, need assistance or need to extend their use of the car. Connect by Hertz is able to "communicate" with the vehicle, enabling representatives to unlock, engage and locate vehicles and cars are equipped with iPod connectivity, Bluetooth capabilities, for hands free driving, and EZ Pass transponders.

About Connect by Hertz
Connect by Hertz car sharing has more than 700 vehicles and more than 200 locations worldwide, including corporate offices and universities. Connect by Hertz offers vehicles are equipped with Eileo® technology, and benefits covered by the competitive hourly rate include gas, insurance, GPS turn-by-turn navigation, 24/7 roadside assistance, 24-hour Member Care Center communication, and, in the US, 180 free miles per day. For more information, visit www.connectbyhertz.com or call Member Care Services at 877-654-4400.

Connect by Hertz vs. ZipCar
Connect by HertzZipCar
Enrollment FeeFree$25 (for basic plan)
Annual Membership FeeFree$60 (for basic plan)
Program Tiers3 tiers:
- Connect (no monthly fee, standard rates)
- Connect 50 (prepay $50 per month, get that in driving credit + reduced rates)
- Connect 125 (prepay $125 per month, get that in driving credit + even lower reduced rates)
5 tiers:
- Occasional Driving (no monthly fee, standard rates)
- EVP (extra value plan):
Prepay $50, $75, $125, or $250 per month.
Hourly RatesStarting at $5; daily rates at $60Starting at $8.50; daily rates at $81
MileageUp to 180 per 24 hour period ($0.45 per extra mile)Same
Insurance$250 deductible$750 deductible
RAC Discount20% discount on HertzNone
Fleet Selection- Prestige cars like the Escalade, Volvo XC70 and XC90
- EVs in NYC: Chevy Volt, Nissan LEAF, smart EV
No EVs in NYC
Added Member Benefits- 24/7 in-house Member Care Center staffed by Hertz employees
- Guaranteed availability Monday through Thursday, including holidays
- Hertz locations all over the country: at the airport, in your neighborhood
Technology
Connect by HertzZipCar
One Way to Other Connect LocationsYesNo
One Way to NYC Area AirportsYesNo
Hands Free In Car CommunicationYesNo
NeverLost GPS in Every US CarYesNo
In Car Screen to Contact Member Care CenterYesNo
BluetoothYesSome
Rapid Activation KitsYesNo
On Site Enrollment KiosksYesNo

CONNECT BY HERTZ GROWTH

Connect by Hertz Global Growth 2009 - 2011
2009 FY2010 FY2011 FY'09-'11 % Growth
Revenue$2.1 M$5.6 M$16 M661 %
Members8,20025,00057,000595 %
Fleet43972286396 %
Transactions20,000102,000326,0001530 %
Connect by Hertz Global Growth Projections 2012 - 2014
201220132014'12-'14 % Growth
Revenue$31M$48M$60M93%
Members164,000223,000256,00056%
Fleet1,6492,1132,58357%
Transactions627,000913,0001,167,00086%

WHAT THEY'RE SAYING
Members Speak

Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/ConnectbyHertz)

"connect by hertz rocks ........"

"Hey Hertz! Thinking about making the switch from Zipcar, Connect seems to have much better customer service, selection, and maintains their cars...."

"Just Joined Today!!! So excited to throw away my zipcard!"

"Kissing my Zipcar membership goodbye and getting Connect by hertz in the morning!! Super excited!"

Twitter (http://twitter.com/ConnectByHertz)

"I just got off the phone with Hertz who exceeded my expectations so much they deserve a tweet. Here you go. @ConnectByHertz"

"Omg Found A Car Sharing Company That Allows 18 Year Olds To Sign Up @ConnectByHertz . Love @Hertz"