BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (Inside INdiana Business) – Indiana University’s Angel Network is investing in Chicago-based vehicle-maintenance platform CarAdvise. IU says the startup recently closed a Series A round of funding, which included $200,000 from the IU Angel Network.
IU says CarAdvise, which started in 2015, now serves 475,000 mechanics and car owners.
“As the company grew, we felt it was the right time to bring in outside investors in order to expand our network,” said Ben Londergan, chief operating officer. “Bringing in investors with new and different backgrounds helps us move the company to the next level through more robust connections. In addition, it was valuable for us to receive external validation of the company’s mission.”
The university says CarAdvise users are able to price maintenance and repairs, book appointments and receive updates on their vehicle’s status with an average savings of 30% or more.
“Automobile maintenance is different from other transactions in that it tends to be a dynamic transaction,” said Londergan. “A customer might go in for an oil change but also need a wheel alignment or tire rotation. Our digital approval of added services and upfront pricing for those services really set us apart. And partner-shops agree they will not request unnecessary work through the platform.”
CarAdvise is also working with commercial driving fleets through partnerships with Uber, Shell and DoorDash, among others.
“Each partner ends up interacting with the product differently, and we have different user interfaces for each case,” added Londergan. “We believe this approach will scale up moving forward.”
The startup will use the funds to expand its product development team, marketing and business development. According to Londergan, CarAdvise is also planning to add functionality and new programs to the platform.