Autoquake has a powerful business model which stands apart in the sector. It creates value for both consumers and fleets in a way that has never been done before
Autoquake.com, the UK’s largest online used car retailer, today announced the closure of a £6 million round of venture capital and venture debt financing. The equity is being provided by existing investors Accel Partners and Highland Capital Partners and the debt is being provided by Kreos Capital.
Autoquake has pioneered the concept of enabling consumers to buy a used car from a trusted retailer in the comfort of their own home. Cars are displayed on the Autoquake website with detailed descriptions, including over 40 high quality digital pictures. The breadth and transparency of information about the vehicle dramatically changes the consumer purchase experience to the extent that one third of Autoquake customers choose to have the car delivered to their home without having physically seen it.
Buyers are embracing the Autoquake model which gives them a great selection of cars at low prices in a no haggle environment and with a money back guarantee. Customers love the experience and consistently rate the Autoquake.com buying experience highly with more than 90% of customers saying they would recommend the company to a friend or family member. Competitively priced car finance, warranty and insurance are supplementary options that buyers can benefit from.
Autoquake sells high quality ex-fleet and leasing company cars directly to consumers via its award winning website www.autoquake.com. Key to the Autoquake concept is the focus on customers and ensuring that cars are prepared to a high quality, with factory like efficiency, and an ecommerce platform which enable those cars to be sold in a fraction of the time that cars remain on traditional car dealer forecourts. As a result, Autoquake is able to offer car buyers discounts of more than 10% compared to traditional dealers and car supermarkets whilst still providing substantially higher returns to fleets than conventional disposal channels
In the autumn of 2009 Dermot Halpin, formerly President of Expedia in Europe, joined Autoquake as its new CEO. Says Dermot: “Autoquake is about focusing on what customers want when they are buying a used car. In the last 6 months Autoquake has taken big steps forward in terms of operational excellence. We now have a great foundation and are gearing up for the next stage of growth with this new investment. We are pleased to have the continued support of Accel Partners and Highland Capital Partners behind us and are pleased to welcome Kreos Capital onboard.”
“Autoquake has a powerful business model which stands apart in the sector. It creates value for both consumers and fleets in a way that has never been done before. A lot of progress has been made in the business and we are now ready to see the real leverage that it can provide;” says Kevin Comolli, Managing General Partner at Accel Partners.
Says Ross Ahlgren, General Partner at Kreos Capital: “We have followed Autoquake closely for the past two years and are really pleased with the progress we have been seeing. We are delighted to complete this venture debt financing to further support the growth of the business.”
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Autoquake.com’s proven online retail model sells high quality used cars from large corporate fleet and leasing companies to consumers through its website www.autoquake.com. The well maintained ex-company cars are prepared to retail condition and sold via the Autoquake.com website. The company is funded by leading venture capital companies Accel Partners, Highland Capital Partners and Kreos Capital who are investors in companies such as Facebook, Digg and Real Networks.
- Autoquake.com received 5 million website visits in 2009
- The Autoquake website was a Hitwise Top 10 Award winner for the period July - December 2009.
- 60% of Autoquake customers reserve their car online on the very first day they visit the site.
- 35% of Autoquake customers opt for home delivery. On average, these customers pay £7,500 on a car they have only seen on a computer screen.
- Autoquake saved its customers a total of £10m over Parkers guide price in 2009.
- Only 1.4% of customers have made use of the Autoquake 7 day money back guarantee.
- 90% of customers would recommend Autoquake to a friend.
- According to the Capgemini report 08/09, 44% of consumers are likely or very likely to purchase a car on the internet if that functionality is available. This is up from 30% in 2008 and only 2% in 2001.
- 6.7 million used cars were sold in the UK in 2008 at a value of £32.4 billion.
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