[This article is a part of our First Person series, in which professionals share their stories about their lives and careers. If you’d like to contribute, please send a mail to [email protected]]
Spinny’s story started from a conversation over coffee. Ramanshu and I were casually remarking on how many of our friends had bought used cars and how the experience has always been a very complex process. They had to go to a number of dealers, each day just to find the right car. And once this search was over, they had to tackle unreasonable prices quoted by the dealers and even when the price was right, they only got a sense of doubt about the quality of their purchase.
Spinny’s founders(From left to right): Niraj, Ramanshu, Ganesh and Mohit
The used car market had a lot of issues and there was a need to tackle these issues head on. We shared our thoughts with Mohit and Ganesh and all four of us were convinced that this would be our next big venture.
Initially, we conceptualized Spinny as a means to smoothen the transaction of buying used cars. But, as we researched further, we found that the inconveniences and hassles extended beyond buying. It encompassed the entire buying and selling process of any used car. The presence of information asymmetry throughout the market quickly became apparent to us. At this point we knew exactly what Spinny’s aim will be.
To tackle information asymmetry in the industry, we decided to build Spinny on the pillars of trust, transparency, convenience and standardization in every aspect of the used car industry. This meant creating a comprehensive ecosystem which focused on all the pain points of a used car transaction, be it the payment issues, improper title transfers, right valuation of cars or the total experience itself of buying or selling a used car.
In the 10 months of Spinny’s operations, much of what we had set out to resolve in the used car industry have been addressed. Our services have been refined to deliver a truly unified experience to our customers. Sellers coming to our platform get the advantage of our standardized Price Engine, which is based on a million data points that take into account all the standard aspects of a car’s condition. This makes sure that our sellers get a very accurate estimate of the value of their car that is based on actual tangible data.
One of the biggest hindrances for prospective used car buyers is the quality and condition of the car itself. In the unorganized used car market, most buyers find out the true condition of the car after their purchase. We’ve brought transparency into this area by developing a standard inspection process that evaluates a car on 200 parameters. Every car listed passes through this rigorous inspection process and the report is readily available for the buyer, so there is never any doubt about the car’s condition. Also, for buyers who are buying their second hand car from another source, such as online classifieds and third party dealers, we launched a pre-purchase inspection service, Spinny Inspect, which offers our thorough inspection process and detailed report to these buyers. Using this service, buyers across the used car market can save themselves from falling prey to certain malpractices in the industry such as meter tampering and refurbished accidental cars. The buyers can also use the included report to negotiate a better deal and make an informed decision before making the purchase.
In the end though, providing the right services won’t count for much if the customer feels inconvenienced throughout the process. We take great care in ensuring that our customers, buyer or seller, don’t have to do face any of the hassles usually involved. Every step of the transaction is handled by Spinny, be it loan processing, title transfers, or even the delivery of the car. Our entire focus is on providing end to end convenience to our customers.
And the response to our site and services has been phenomenal. Currently, there are more than 3000 cars listed on our platform and 500 satisfied customers. On the operations front, we are handling 300 requests daily while our inspectors inspect more than 100 cars a day. This in itself is more than enough validation that our services and platform are making a difference in the industry.
[The author, Niraj Singh, is the CEO and Founder of Spinny]