A good news story? Europe's sharing economy

PwC continues its investigation into the value of the sharing economy - and finds growth outstripping its recent predictions.

Professional services firm PwC has said that the sharing economy is growing twice as fast as it predicted in its 2014 research.

In 2015, the sharing economy was responsible for €28bn of transactions within Europe.  The changes in business models, the challenges to established businesses and the opportunities for new entrants means organisations from all sectors should be asking themselves fundamental questions about their target markets and how they do business.

Younger consumers in particular are embracing the sharing economy.  A third of 25-39 year olds have used a sharing service – they are three times more likely to do so than those over 55.

PwC's research continues to focus on five sectors, each facilitated by online platforms/apps:

  • Peer to peer transportation – the research predicts this will continue to account for the most revenue generation and be the most disruptive sector
  • Peer to peer accommodation – Europe has been a major area of growth and now accounts for over half of all of Airbnb's global listings
  • Collaborative finance – predicted to grow steadily until overtaking transportation as the biggest revenue generator by 2025
  • On demand professional services
  • On demand household services – predicted to be the fastest growing of the five sectors

PwC believes that the sharing economy will become a "shining beacon of growth" in Europe, with revenues growing at roughly 35% a year – ten times faster than the wider economy.

The full report is available here.