The Graz startup micardo has been operating a used car e-commerce platform for a number of years – brutkasten reported several times. Like other e-commerce companies, the start-up benefited from the Corona year 2020 in its core business. The greatest growth is currently being achieved with another product: the CarCutter AI tool.
micardo: KI tool CarCutter as a “chance invention”
This is actually a “coincidental invention”, said Co-Founder Stefan Fedl: “Thanks to our online platform, we quickly saw how important good and professional photos are for the sale of cars. If an advertisement is published without images, nobody will look at it. However, shooting and processing top photos has cost an enormous amount of time and money “.
Uniform branding is particularly important to larger retailers. So far, photos of cars, for example in the parking lot, have been taken, then sent to the Far East, manually released and finally packed in a neutral setting. “What took an average of 48 hours, our CarCutter can do – fully automatically thanks to artificial intelligence – in around 15 seconds,” says Co-Founder Florian König. Similar to what the remove.bg tool does with people, the software recognizes vehicle silhouettes, removes disruptive elements and backgrounds and places them in a 3D showroom. Customers can use individual branding.
This offer is combined with an app that shows users whether they are taking photos at the right angle, and with an interface that dealers can use to place the vehicle directly on online sales platforms.
Million deal in the USA and six-figure investment
The tool turned out to be a lucrative new line of business for micardo. “Only recently an annual order worth millions was secured with one of the largest dealers in the USA. And a Swiss reseller also supplies us with great orders, as well as one of the five largest car dealerships in Germany, ”says the third Co-Founder, Patrick Schwarzenberger.
To fuel this growth put down Business Angel Maximilian Seidel, who was already involved with his Situlus Holding, made another six-figure investment. “Micardo and the CarCutter are currently recording enormous growth – in times when it is also part of the ‘new normal’ to buy cars on the Internet. Of course, we also support this as an investor and provide growth capital. The technology is so impressive and we are also very pleased with the international activities, ”comments Seidel. The startup plans to use the capital to further expand marketing and sales activities as well as the technology in the coming months in order to be able to land further big deals, according to the startup.