India's CarDekho receives US$250-M funding to boost expansion plans

CarDekho

India’s largest car search engine platform CarDekho has received a fresh US$250-million in funding, and is now a member of the unicorn club with a current valuation of US$1.2 billion.

The largest fundraising thus far made by CarDekho will be used to fast-track the company’s growth in used car transactions, financial services, and insurance businesses, build robust product and technology functions, increase brand awareness, and expand into new markets.

CarDekho will be expanding its used car retail transactions business geographically and is set to increase its catalog to 10,000 cars in the near future. Currently, it has a catalog of more than 3,000 certified pre-owned cars available for online purchase in more than 100 markets.

Present in India, Indonesia, and Philippines (with its auto and non-auto products being used in more than 30 countries worldwide), CarDekho is targeting to utilize the funds to expand internationally while intensifying its presence across India with retail hubs that will focus on both used car buying and certified pre-owned car retail transactions with customers.

CarDekho Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Amit Jain noted that the company has evolved from being a car research portal to a complete ecosystem for car buying, lifecycle management and selling.

“We are committed to empowering our customers and providing them with a convenient and hassle-free experience. The new fundraise will help us expand our used car transactions and financial services businesses. The trust and conviction of our investors will help us to accelerate our growth plans while we provide our customers with an experience that will continue to redefine car buying and selling,” Jain assured.

CarDekho

The funding round was spearheaded by LeapFrog Investments, a global impact investor focused on financial services and healthcare access.

As CarDekho Group continues to scale up, LeapFrog will support the company’s plans to deliver quality and affordable vehicles, insurance, and finance to millions of new emerging consumers. 

“Amit and the team have done an outstanding job in building the leading digital platform in India’s auto-tech market. We expect the business to continue on its rapid growth trajectory thanks to the caliber of the team and the extraordinary tailwinds which this segment now enjoys from increasing formalization, digitization and transparency. CarDekho is an outstanding platform for large-scale social impact, already making vehicles more accessible, affordable and trustworthy for over three million emerging consumers. Improving access to mobility in this way will help to drive development in other key areas, such as healthcare and education,” LeapFrog Investments Partner and Co-Head of South Asian Investments Stewart Langdon claimed.

Aside from Leapfrog, other new investors include US-based Canyon Partners, Mirae Asset and Harbor Spring Capital. Sequoia Capital India and Sunley House reaffirmed their trust and confidence in the company by investing further.

“Amit, Anurag, and the team at CarDekho have built a business that has far exceeded our initial expectations. Several of their business units hold leadership positions, and are now building further expertise in the used cars and financial services space where they are strongly positioned. The team at Sequoia India continues to be strong believers in their long-term success,” Sequoia India Managing Director Shailesh Lakhani stated.

“We are thrilled to continue our support of CarDekho and their mission to be the leading retail auto and financial services provider in Southeast Asia. Since our initial investment, the company has had tremendous growth, establishing itself as the largest tech-auto platform in India. We are confident that this new investment will enable CarDekho to accelerate its growth in the auto retail market while capitalizing on the sizable addressable market in auto insurance,” Sunley House Capital Director Abhinav Sharman noted.

In a statement, CarDekho's digital platforms, “New Auto,” and its financial services businesses are said to be already profitable, while its insurance business (InsuranceDekho.com), has crossed the break-even point. The latest investment is set to help CarDekho move closer to its vision of making car buying, selling, and owning an enjoyable, transparent, and affordable experience for its customers.

CarDekho works directly with almost all automobile manufacturers in India, amounting for up to 30 percent of annual sales for its strategic partners.

It also works actively with more than 3,500 new auto dealers and above-4,000 used car dealers, homegrown traders and entrepreneurs.

Further, it has forged collaborations with more than 14 financial institutions and at least 40 insurance companies to facilitate used car finance and insurance thereby providing a seamless experience to both used car buyers and sellers.

In 2019, CarDekho acquired Carmudi Philippines, and put up ZigWheels Philippines.

Images from CarDekho

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