Peterborough online used car market accelerates growth with £112m funding

An growing online car sales company in Peterborough has just secured £112 million funding to accelerate its expansion.

By Paul Grinnell
Monday, 29th November 2021, 12:15 pm
Carzam co-founders Peter Waddell, left, and John Bailey.
Carzam co-founders Peter Waddell, left, and John Bailey.

Carzam, based in Samson House, Morley Way, has been backed by investors led by an unnamed US-registered global institutional investment management firm as it look to harness new technology to drive sales.

It is the first external fund raising round for Carzam, which was launched just a year ago and has already clocked up sales of about £150 million, as it battles with Cazoo and Cinch for online customers.

The company, which has 150 plus staff, was founded by Peter Waddell and John Bailey and seeks to deliver used cars across the country in 24 hours.

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Carzam chief executive Kirk O’Callaghan said: “Carzam has exceeded its launch expectations.

“We are now on track to becoming the fastest growing online car sales business, an ambition which has moved closer with this investment.

He added: “The funds will move us almost immediately into our next phase.

“Scaling the business will strengthen our customer proposition and bring employment opportunities across a variety of disciplines.”

Mr Bailey said: “This is a pivotal moment in Carzam’s history. To attract investment at this scale just months after our launch is a huge achievement and is recognition of our rapid growth.”

Mr Waddell said: “This is testament to our team’s efforts to establish Carzam, and to the strength of our customer proposition – we offer a simple way to buy the best quality used cars at competitive prices.”

“It’s a model that makes sense to the consumer and that works for us as a business.”

Mr O’Callaghan added: “The appetite for investment in Carzam reflects the strength of its online car sales proposition.

“We continue to grow our customer and remarketing services in preparation to increase our unit numbers exponentially.

“The £112 million will propel Carzam into its next chapter. The funding will support technology development, which is required to keep pace with consumer demand.

“Buyers are hungry for a hassle-free purchase at a fixed price, with excellent aftercare and a money back guarantee. People want to browse from home and make their own choice – they don’t want to be sold to.

“This new investment will facilitate Carzam’s bold plans and cement us as a true industry challenger, bringing quality used cars to the market faster, in better condition and in much greater volume.”

Carzam sources high-quality used cars which are rigorously checked and readied for sale in its preparation centres.

Cars can be delivered in as little as 24 hours from order, either to the customer’s home or to a Carzam collection centre, and can be returned within 14 days if the customer isn’t completely satisfied.

Royal Bank of Canada supported Carzam through the investment process and CMS acted as the company’s legal advisor.