London startup Carwow has raised £12.5 million for its site that aims to help you get the best price on a brand new vehicle by introducing you to a range of dealers.
The startup was launched by James Hind (CEO), Alexandra Margolis and David Santoro in 2013 in a bid to improve the car buying experience.
Carwow allows users to put details into its platform about the car that they want to buy, including the model, year, and spec. The request is passed on to all the dealers on the Carwow platform, and the user receives up to five offers from the best-rated dealers, who they can then contact directly.
The investment round, led by Spotify and Dropbox backers Accel Partners, will help Carwow to fund advertising and the costs associated with training dealers to use the platform. The money will also be used to build several new products and hire more people across the company’s sales team.
Previous investors Balderton Capital, Samos Investments and Episode 1 Ventures, also participated in the round, which follows a £4.6 million Series A investment in December 2014.
Hind said in a statement: “We’re excited to roll out our service even further on the back of strong growth in 2015. A new car is an important purchase, typically a person’s biggest after their home. At Carwow, we enjoy working with the industry to make things simpler and more efficient for all involved. This new round of funding gives us the firepower we need to change the way the UK buys cars.”
Fred Destin, a partner at Accel, will be joining the board. Destin said in a statement that Carwow reminds him of Zoopla in the early days. “They’re changing the discovery experience through a superb online platform and better information and are creating a win-win for consumers and dealers, brought to you by a wonderful founding team.”
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