Like other IITians, Amit Jain also graduated from IIT Delhi with a passion inside to be an entrepreneur but it took some time for him to put his ideas on the floor. He completed his bachelors from IIT Delhi in 1999 and worked with Austin-based Trilogy for nearly 8 years, resigned from his job and in 2008, launched his own business website, which we all know as Cardekho.com.
Amit had a passion to do something and after quitting his job at Trilogy, he gets into his father’s business of gemstones but after working there for about 6 months, he realized that he should work as an entrepreneur on a bigger platform. He then launched his company Girnar Softwares, the parent company of Cardekho. The parent company owns other subsidiary portal like Bikedekho.com, Mobiledekho.com, Pricedekho.com and most recently launched Tyredekho.com.
The company started from a single room set with just two laptops in hand and has reached a valuation of $300 million today. With its current valuation, it has joined the hands with other portals in the category of $300 million like Bookmyshow, Quikr and Zomato.
CarDekho makes searching of your favorite car easier than ever. Options like search by price, car model, brand name and even by city had been made available for easierbrowsing over the platform.
The acquisition of gaadi.com made CarDekho India’s No1 auto platform with over 14 million visitors collectively in a month.
What is the Business Model CarDekho is implementing?
CarDekho and Gaadi.com earn from lead generation for new and used cars, and media sales on their portals. The two platforms set together claim more than 2,500 car dealer tie-ups across the country, the largest among any auto portal. In additionto this, CarDekho also helps their 8 partner OEM manufacturers to sell over 4,000 cars each month through its platform.
For instant loans and finance to the applicants, company had collaborated with BankBazaar.com and other financial institutions in India to serve its customer better. Recently HDFC has invested in the company for 1% stake and it is expected that now the users can have an easy option of finance through HDFC.
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How much Cardekho.com has received in Funding?
Sequence of funding came for the online auto portal resulting CarDekho to stand up in the category of $300 million with the firms like Bookmyshow, Quikr and Zomato.
The first round of funding came for the company in 2013 when Sequoia Capital invested $15 million for 20% stake in the company.
The company later raised Series B round of funding valuing worth $50 million from Hillhouse Capital, Tybourne Capital and Sequoia Capital. Then Ratan Tata showed interest in the company and an undisclosed amount was invested in the company on behalf of him.
Most recently, in last month, an undisclosed amount from HDFC Bank came for the company for 1% stake in the company. The partnership with HDFC Bank will allow CarDekho’s users to have access of easy finance option while buying a new or used car through the auto portal.
What marketing strategies CarDekho adoptedfor its business promotion?
The company adopted several marketing techniques since its inception to promote its business and increase sales and awareness among the customers. Digital promotion has been done on large scale for increasing its reachability across the globe and to higher the engagement over the website.
CarDekho acquired Gaadi.com to increase their customer base and offer more refined options to its customers. Gaddi.com got acquired in late September last year for around $11 million (undisclosed). The acquisition has brought over 14 million visitors collectively for both of the platform in a month and made them Number1 auto platform in the world.
Most recently, on April 29, 2015, CarDekho acquired Delhi based online shopping price comparison portal BuyingIQ.com for an undisclosed amount. CarDekho is ready to use the unbeatable data analysis potential of BuyingIQ for their car portal.
The company is spending a lot on brand promotion through tele-ads and print media advertisement. A regular advertisement promoting the brand can be seen on televisions and print media now aday.
Cardekho.com had brought back its know-it-all character, ‘Mr I Know’, for the IPL 2015 season.
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The proper use of content has led the company’s website on the top of the list. Use of well-targeted high quality keywords and proper Adwords conversion tracking has playedspectacular role in bringing the website on the top among other auto portals not only in India but also in world.The content was extensively designed to differentiate CarDekho from other auto websites.
Mobile friendly site was launched keeping in view the excessive growth of mobile and handheld devices in India. Other than the mobile optimized website, company also launched its mobile app which runs on several platforms like android, iOS and windows.
Social media advertising
Using social media integration in their business promoted its site well among right audience and helped in gaining on name and fame. Cardekho effectively used Facebook and Twitter marketing.
In its initial days, opportunities were open for the company to utilize social media platform effectively and CarDekho left no room in using it. As of now, Facebook fan page has over 5.65 lacs followers and Twitter fan page has over 8000 followers.
In order to increase its members and make them visit again and again, CarDekho has adopted a decent email marketing strategy in which they used to send company’s promotional emails every day to each of their registered members.
Result of the marketing strategy adopted…
With implementing all these marketing strategies, Cardekho became one of the most visited car sites across the Indian subcontinent as well as internationally. The numbers of visitors and page views has steadily risen with search engine rankings moving up.
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