Daimler leads £25m investment round in Carwow platform

Existing investors Balderton Capital, Accel and Vitruvian Partners are all reinvesting in the technology platform, while Daimler’s Axel Harries will take a …

Carwow, an online new car sales platform, has closed a £25m funding round, led by German vehicle manufacturer Daimler AG.

The funding injection will be used to accelerate growth for Carwow in the UK, Germany and Spain. The company plans to invest in talent, product development and marketing.

The platform is designed to help consumers through the car-buying journey with plentiful information and reviews, transparency on pricing and ratings across the site’s network of dealerships. More than £5bn’s worth of cars have been bought on the platform since the company launched – representing 5% of the total UK market.

Since launching in Germany in 2016, the company has experienced rapid growth and now accounts for 1.5% of all new retail car sales. The Spanish operation, launched a year ago, expects to sell €200 million worth of vehicles by the end of this year.

Existing investors Balderton Capital, Accel and Vitruvian Partners are all reinvesting in the technology platform, while Daimler’s Axel Harries will take a seat on the firm’s board of directors. The investment round marks the first time Carwow has opened up to strategic investors.

“When carwow was founded, there was a view from the industry that there might be some resistance for a model that levelled the playing field for consumers and dealers,” said James Hind. “Having one of the world’s leading car manufacturers investing in the future growth and success of our business is a real proof point that this is a solution that works.

“This demonstrates that the industry perspective is shifting to what we anticipated when we launched, not only that the car purchasing journey was primed to move into the digital era, but that dealers and manufacturers can greatly reap the benefits of more informed and empowered customers.”

Rob Moffat, partner at Balderton Capital, added: “We are delighted to bring Daimler on board at carwow, alongside further investment from Balderton, Accel and Vitruvian. This investment from one of the leading global car manufacturers demonstrates how strategically important carwow is becoming for online car sales across Europe.”

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Daimler leads £25 million strategic financing round for London-based car marketplace Carwow

It’s the first time the London scale-up has opened up to strategic investors, having earlier taken funding from the likes of Episode 1, Balderton Capital, …

UK-based car marketplace Carwow today announced a £25 million strategic funding round, led by German car manufacturer Daimler, the parent company of the Mercedes-Benz brand. Daimler exec Axel Harries will also take a seat on the Carwow board of directors.

It’s the first time the London scale-up has opened up to strategic investors, having earlier taken funding from the likes of Episode 1, Balderton Capital, Accel, Vitruvian Partners and others. The latter three also participated in this new round.

James Hind, who started Carwow as a car review aggregator business almost a decade ago along with Alexandra Margolis and David Santoro, said: “When carwow was founded, there was a view from the industry that there might be some resistance for a model that levelled the playing field for consumers and dealers. Having one of the world’s leading car manufacturers investing in the future growth and success of our business is a real proof point that this is a solution that works.”

The company says its marketplace has already been used to facilitate £2 billion+ worth of car sales to date.

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carwow announces £25m funding round

Daimler AG is joining investors such as Balderton Capital, Accel and Vitruvian Partners, all of which are re-investing in the tech firm, and other …

carwow, the online platform where consumers can research, compare and buy new and nearly-new cars has announced a strategic funding round, led by German car manufacturer Daimler AG, the parent company of the Mercedes-Benz brand.

The capital from the £25m strategic funding round will unlock further growth potential for the business and consolidate the firm’s ambition to emerge as a scale-up success story, deepening its presence in the UK by investing in talent, product development and marketing.

Daimler AG is joining investors such as Balderton Capital, Accel and Vitruvian Partners, all of which are re-investing in the tech firm, and other strategic investors from the automotive sector to support the further growth of carwow across new and existing markets. Daimler AG’s Axel Harries, Vice President Sales Functions Mercedes-Benz Cars & Product Management Mercedes-Benz Passenger Cars, will also take a Board seat on the carwow board of directors.

This investment is the first time carwow has opened up to strategic investors, to back the technology business that aims to completely transform the traditional car buying model and meet the growing need from buyers to start the journey online and easily compare options in the research phase.

carwow helps to inform consumers throughout their car buying journey with high quality content and reviews, transparency on pricing and ratings across their nationwide network of approved dealerships, who in turn benefit from targeted brand exposure and qualified enquiries from consumers who know what they want.

The demand for this service has been undeniable, with over £5bn of pounds worth of cars bought through carwow since the company launched, currently one in every 20 new retail cars in the UK sold is via carwow, representing 5% of the market.

James Hind, founder of carwow, commented: “When carwow was founded, there was a view from the industry that there might be some resistance for a model that levelled the playing field for consumers and dealers; having one of the world’s leading car manufacturers investing in the future growth and success of our business is a real proof point that this is a solution that works.

“This demonstrates that the industry perspective is shifting to what we anticipated when we launched, not only that the car purchasing journey was primed to move into the digital era, but that dealers and manufacturers can greatly reap the benefits of more informed and empowered customers.”

Rob Moffat, Partner at Balderton Capital, said: “We are delighted to bring Daimler on board at carwow, alongside further investment from Balderton, Accel and Vitruvian. This investment from one of the leading global car manufacturers demonstrates how strategically important carwow is becoming for online car sales across Europe.”

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Daimler AG opens strategic funding round for carwow

Rob Moffat, partner at Balderton Capital, which is another investor in carwow, added: “We are delighted to bring Daimler on board at carwow, …

carwow has announced a strategic funding round, led by German car manufacturer Daimler AG, the parent company of the Mercedes-Benz brand.

The £25m strategic funding round will unlock further growth potential for the business and consolidate the firm’s ambition to emerge as a scale-up success story. It will allow the company to increase its presence in the UK by investing in talent, product development and marketing.

This investment is the first time carwow has opened up to strategic investors.

Daimler AG’s Axel Harries, vice president sales functions Mercedes-Benz cars & product management Mercedes-Benz Passenger Cars, will also take a Board seat on the carwow board of directors.

James Hind, founder of carwow, said: “When carwow was founded, there was a view from the industry that there might be some resistance for a model that levelled the playing field for consumers and dealers.

“Having one of the world’s leading car manufacturers investing in the future growth and success of our business is a real proof point that this is a solution that works.

“This demonstrates that the industry perspective is shifting to what we anticipated when we launched, not only that the car purchasing journey was primed to move into the digital era, but that dealers and manufacturers can greatly reap the benefits of more informed and empowered customers.”

Rob Moffat, partner at Balderton Capital, which is another investor in carwow, added: “We are delighted to bring Daimler on board at carwow, alongside further investment from Balderton, Accel and Vitruvian.

“This investment from one of the leading global car manufacturers demonstrates how strategically important carwow is becoming for online car sales across Europe.”

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Revolut lines up Metro Bank exec MacLean as next CFO

… financial backing from some of the biggest names in the venture capital industry, including Balderton Capital, DST Global and Index Ventures.

David MacLean, Metro Bank’s finance director, has resigned to join the fast-growing digital bank Revolut, Sky News learns.

A senior executive at Metro Bank is being lined up as the new finance chief of Revolut, the British digital bank which is poised to raise hundreds of millions of pounds to fuel its expansion.

Sky News has learnt that David MacLean, who has been finance director of Metro Bank since 2016, is to join Revolut in the coming months.

His appointment comes after a torrid period for his current employer, which has seen billions of pounds of deposit outflows amid concerns about its financial health.

At Revolut, Mr MacLean, who reports to Metro Bank’s chief financial officer, will take on responsibility for the finances of a fintech company which has itself been forced to respond to stiff challenges to its reputation.

Mr MacLean’s recruitment will form part of a concerted effort by Revolut’s founder, Nikolay Storonsky, to bolster its senior ranks.

Michael Sherwood, the former boss of Goldman Sachs in Europe‎ and one of the City’s most prominent bank executives, is to join Revolut as a non-executive director, while Martin Gilbert, the fund management executive, is being lined up as its new chairman.

The hiring of a new finance chief comes after Peter O’Higgins resigned earlier this year.

Steve Tryner has been holding the role on an interim basis for the last few months.

In a statement issued to Sky News on Monday, a Metro Bank spokesperson said: “We can confirm that David MacLean is leaving Metro Bank to take up a new role.

“We wish him every success.”

Mr Storonsky later said of the appointment: “Dave brings a wealth of banking and financial services experience to the table and, as we prepare to launch Revolut in new international markets, will play a crucial role in our mission to help improve the financial wellbeing of millions of people worldwide.

“We’re excited for Dave to join us later this year”.

From a standing start less than five years ago, Revolut now has close to six million customers across Europe, roughly half of whom are in the UK.

Revolut says it is opening 12,000 accounts every day – equating to four million each year – and has received financial backing from some of the biggest names in the venture capital industry, including Balderton Capital, DST Global and Index Ventures.

A further funding round, which is expected to seek in the region of $500m, is likely to take place later this year amid a race by banking start-ups to raise capital for expansion and regulatory purposes.

Monzo, which is chaired by the former Northern Rock chief Gary Hoffman, announced a £113m fundraising last month which valued it at more than £2bn.

Zopa, another digital player, is also in talks with investors, while Atom Bank has just raised another £50m.

Mr Storonsky recently told Financial News that he would like Revolut to be worth between $20bn and $40bn before it contemplates a stock market listing, which is likely to be several years away.

The new board members’ arrival at Revolut will bolster a line-up lacking big City names, and which has faced searching questions about the quality of its compliance functions.

The firm became mired in a row about claims made in a newspaper article that it had “switched off” an automated system designed to prevent its money transfer system being used to violate international sanctions.

Revolut insisted that the new system was simply being tested alongside existing controls.

The company has also faced questions about alleged links ‎to the Kremlin, which it has vehemently denied.

The Bank of England’s Prudential Regulation Authority recently challenged faster-growing firms under its auspices to adopt more rigorous stress-testing and evidence of greater challenge by board members.

As well as the UK, Revolut operates in Australia and across Europe, with launches in Canada, the US, Japan and Singapore expected shortly.

Sources said its next round of funding was likely to value it at more than $5bn, potentially making it Britain’s most valuable recent tech start-up.

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