Car owners never had it this good. Autoyaar, am Ahmedabad-based start-up, promises to get your car picked up after you reach office, service it thoroughly and return it by the time you are ready to leave for home. Having launched its website-only model in October 2015, the start-up recently began operations in Pune even as the founders work towards launching an app version.
“The automobile industry is so important that it is used to judge how the country is doing. And we found automobile servicing is mostly based on references,” says Amisha Shah, one of the four founders of Autoyaar, explaining what made them get into this segment.
Autoyaar picks up two- and four-wheelers which are inspected by its service providers. Constant tracking details are sent to the customer once the inspection begins, while the details of the person picking up the vehicle such as driving licence, etc., are also shared with the customer; all via SMS.
A brainchild of Bharat Ostwal, who set it up along with Shah, Sunil Gupta and Abhishek Gupta, Autoyaar currently has more than 1,600 customers in Ahmedabad, and is optimistic about getting a better response in Pune. That, Shah says, is because “IT penetration in Pune is extremely high. People are more internet-friendly there, and they also have a higher level of trust in services offered online as compared to people in Ahmedabad. However, things are changing for the better now even in Ahmedabad.”
The start-up is sparing no efforts at achieving its aim of becoming a “one-stop solution” for all auto-related problems. It provides post-service support as well as a three-month guarantee for “re-repairs”. Customers also receive a call for feedback after post servicing.
Initially Autoyaar only listed service providers. It has now changed into an online marketplace by providing a booking platform. Shah laughs reminiscently, “We wanted to be a Zomato!”
Autoyaar had to face several challenges in convincing service providers to come on board. “We had to convince service providers that we could bring them more revenue while streamlining the process. We offer them business in huge volumes and in return, they offer us lucrative rates which we are able to pass on to the customers,” Shah says.
Along with general maintenance, Autoyaar also provides services such as car spas which include cleaning of the interiors, upholstery and air-conditioner sanitisation. While the express car spa service which offers basic cleaning and polishing of the vehicle comes for R249, the expensive packages are priced at R2,500. Based on the type of services provided, Autoyaar makes a profit of seven to 12%. It plans to expand its services to include roadside assistance as well as on-site inspection.
The average ticket size for two-wheelers serviced at Autoyaar is R1,000-2,000, while for four-wheelers it is R2,500-3,000. “Since the beginning, we have gone for guerrilla marketing. We have been bootstrapped, but have begun generating revenue from March this year. We are now actively looking for funding.”