Online marketplace Carwow has raised £17.2m in its latest round of investment with multi-million pound media-for-equity agreements signed with ITV and Channel 4.
The media deals, the first of their kind for Carwow have been agreed with ITV Adventures Invest and Channel 4 Ventures.
They form part of the firm’s long-term plan to invest heavily in TV advertising to promote its Sell Your Car service.
The rest of the equity investment came from existing investors, including Vitruvian, Balderton and Accel, as well as Hercules Capital which provided a £40m debt capital facility in December.
James Hind, founder and CEO of Carwow, said: ‘Having such strong growth in 2021, despite the huge issue the new car market is facing, is a testament to our talented, growing team and our ability to offer great new services to consumers and partners across our markets.
‘Whilst we are investing considerably in our Sell Your Car technology and team, our new media-for-equity deals will enable us over the coming years to tell even more people about how we can help them when it comes to changing cars.
‘The digital revolution in automotive retail is bringing more customers to our brand and therefore our partners every day. Despite the delays in new car supply, £4.75bn worth of vehicles were bought, sold or leased between our customers and partners last year – 77 per cent more than in 2020.
‘Lots of our strength in the new car market has been built on people making the switch to EV – where we outperform industry averages.
‘Since late 2021 we’ve seen real signs of confidence in new car sales – especially in Germany where monthly sales have been up over 100 per cent compared to last year.’
His excitement was shared by Carwow’s new media partners.
Niko Waesche, fund manager of ITV Adventures Invest, said: ‘We are delighted to be partnering with Carwow.
‘The team has demonstrated a deep understanding of both content and commerce, helping buyers and sellers across the UK, Spain and Germany.
‘Carwow is the go-to household brand for objective and entertaining car reviews and this guidance is essential for consumers, particularly as many people transition to electric vehicles.’
Vinay Solanki, head of Channel 4 Ventures added: ‘We are excited to invest in Carwow and bring significant value to the brand as they seek to further scale their business through TV advertising.
‘Working together with ITV AdVentures Invest for the first time, our combined media offering maximises the opportunity to significantly accelerate awareness of Carwow’s new Sell Your Car service in the UK.
‘We hope this investment approach is a key differentiator to Carwow’s long term success.’