One of the most well-received insights reports from Momentum Works was Used car platforms in Southeast Asia report published in 2020.
In the report we analysed Southeast Asia’s used car market, the used car buying journey, major players and their strategies, as well as core business models and ancillary revenue opportunities.
To date, the Used car platforms in Southeast Asia report remains a popular and authoritative reference amongst investors and strategic players.
The ecosystem has evolved since then, though. Both major players, Carro and Carsome, have become unicorns; while consolidation happened with some of the smaller players, as we had predicted.
Last Friday (14 July), part of our insights team joined Carsome’s media/investors day in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Malaysia is the home and largest market of Carsome, where it has evolved to tackle the whole used car journey (C2B, B2C and ancillaries).
We thought it might be interesting to share some behind-the-scenes photos from our visit.
Here you go!
Carsome HQ featuring Eric Cantona (who also ‘appears’ at many showrooms across Malaysia)
Carsome’s largest showroom is located in Petaling Jaya, which is now an integral part of the Kuala Lumpur metropolitan area. The showroom houses over 200 cars.
There is a large reception area – something you usually see at new car showrooms but rarely used car facilities in the country.
Interestingly, Eric Cantona presents himself in various corners of the showroom.
Ps: This is how a typical used car mart in Malaysia looks:
The > 100,000 square feet (>9,000 square meters) Carsome showroom caters to a range of services.
Consumers can bring in used cars to sell, have the car inspected and quoted, browse for cars to buy, as well as pick up cars they have bought. (Both C2B and B2C combined).
Selling a car? There are four on-site inspectors to handle the inspection before quoting a price. According to the inspector in charge, about 50% of the cars inspected are rejected on the spot due to major accidents / flood damage.
Each car comes with a QR code sticker, which will lead you to the detailed information page on the Carsome app.
Of course, there is a lot of focus on creating a used car buying experience like that of buying a new car. Here is how a car is set up for a photoshoot with the buyer. (happy moment!)
We have also visited Carsome’s refurbishment facility (Carsome Certified Lab), located in Klang, a city located right next to the port and is famous for its Bak Kut Teh stalls.
After a seller sends in the car and after a 175-point inspection, the car will be sent to the >185,000 square feet (>17,000 square meters) refurbishment facility, where close to 2,000 cars are refurbished monthly.
Here, the cars will go through the cycle of the refurbishment process, which includes mechanical repairs (e.g.: engine and brake system), body and paint & polishing, exterior wash, and final quality check.
Finally, the car will be ready for a 360-degree photo shoot at the photo booth (which will be uploaded on to the app.
Here is the 360-degree interior and exterior view consumers see in the app:
Ultimately, as mentioned in our Used Car Platforms in Southeast Asia report, consistent standards and quality of cars are the key to the used car business. As we can see above, a lot of effort and investment have to be put into place to create consumer trust.
You can refer to our Used Car Platforms in Southeast Asia Report for a structured analysis of the used car market and the competitive dynamics of various platforms, including Carsome, Carro, OLX Autos and others.