iCar Asia Limited (‘iCar Asia’ or the ‘Company’), owner of ASEAN's number 1 network of automotive portals recently announced that the company has secured access to additional funding in the amount of AUD$25.5 million.
Commenting on the announcement, Hamish Stones, Chief Executive Officer of iCar Asia said that the announcement is confirmation of iCar Asia’s leading status in the market, and represents a real vote of confidence in our strategy and vision. Stones further added, “We will continue to focus on expanding and strengthening our digital automotive market leadership position in Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia. The company is ideally placed to take advantage of the opportunities to shape the market as it further develops in the years to come, and drive this digital transformation across the ASEAN automotive industry,”
Operating in the world’s 5th largest automotive market serving a population of more than 600 million, iCar Asia currently owns seven automotive portals across three countries – Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia.
“The AUD$25.5 million will help accelerate our transformation while better positioning us to execute on our strategy and mission to be the largest and most trusted automotive portals that connect car buyers and sellers across the ASEAN region. We are committed to serving the interests of all stakeholders, including customers, partners, employees, investors and our communities,” shared Stone.
Strong year on year growth has revealed that iCar Asia continues to dominate and progress across all key metrics in the digital automotive space.
Georg Chmiel, Executive Chairman of iCar Asia said that the investment is another key milestone in iCar Asia’s growth story and a major vote of confidence in the company’s strategy and business model.
“In 2017, the company started to significantly accelerate its growth rate as well as grow its market share in many dimensions across the core markets of Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia. The additional funds raised will allow the company to accelerate this growth in both the used and new car segment by making additional investments and pursue additional growth opportunities,” shared Chmiel.
The AUD$25.5 million investment will also be channelled towards:
Driving Innovation & Technology
The investment will be used to increase innovative product development and operations to support the rapid growth of the company. The company will also continue investment in and optimization of the new car and used car platforms and deliver further innovations in mobile app functionality to drive user engagement and extend the Company’s competitive technical advantage.
One of the core features is an artificial intelligence and machine learning platform that uses a chatbot, to aid in all things to do with buying a car.
“In Malaysia we recently launched a completely fresh new car section, including a chatbot named Ari. Its mission is to assist new car buyers in getting the most relevant information and the best deals in town. These new developments are a result of the company’s commitment towards constantly finding new ways to improve its offering to its customers, never wanting to stand still,” shared Stone.
Accelerating Marketing Activities
The investment will also be channelled towards growing the company’s position in the New Car sales category through marketing while maintaining its position as the leading online used car marketplace.
“With the additional investment, we will also be looking at increasing the number of car shows such as the Luxury Drive, Hot Deals Carnival and sales events to build transaction volumes across both new and used car platforms,” shared Stone.
Revving Business Development Opportunities
The investment will also be channelled towards investing in sales and operations to support the roll-out of the transactional new car business. As part of this proposition, the company will look at expanding into adjacent market segments including auto finance, insurance, inspection and warranty services.
Stone concluded saying “We are the clear market leader in the online vertical automotive space across ASEAN. Our leading position has presented us with an exciting opportunity to expand and strengthen our leadership further in the new car space. The next 5 years will be transformative for the automotive industry in ASEAN as digital channels become more and more integrated into how businesses operate. With the investment, iCar Asia is optimally positioned to be at the centre of driving this transformation. We have the right brands, audience and platforms to continue to deliver world-class online experience combined with offline events.”
SOURCE iCar Asia Limited