Peer-to-peer vehicle sharing network Car Next Door has raised $2 million in a funding round led by Hyundai, with participation from existing backer Caltex.
The funding comes as part of a collaboration between Car Next Door and the automaker, with Hyundai working to create ‘sharing ready’ cars through the connecting of its new vehicles to an app, Auto Link, which will allow owners to more easily put their cars up for rent on Car Next Door.
The app will allow renters to access and drive the vehicles without keys.
Scott Grant, chief operating officer of Hyundai Motor Company Australia, said, “Australians will be able to buy a Hyundai car with the potential to rent it out.
“This capability will be pre-installed and seamlessly integrated into Hyundai’s Auto Link app, making it a simple matter to earn extra funds via Car Next Door’s innovative sharing platform. We think it will be a great feature for Hyundai owners and we are very proud to partner with Car Next Door in this fantastic innovation.”
The Auto Link functionality is fitted to Hyundai’s i30 and Kona, and will also be introduced to its Santa Fe and IONIQ models.
Will Davies, cofounder and CEO of Car Next Door, said, “Fuel prices, economic pressures and rapid changes in vehicle technology are all supporting the development of connected cars and the sharing economy – so you can have a car when you need one, but when you’re not using it, the vehicle is out there making you money. Owners can then factor this income into their regular repayments.”
The fresh funding follows the startup’s raising of $5 million earlier this year.
Along with funding from backers including Investible and Steve Baxter, a portion of the round came through equity crowdfunding platform Equitise; Car Next Door had originally sought to raise a minimum of $500,000 through its crowdfunding offering, however ended up with almost $800,000.
The startup is also looking to strategic partnerships with Caltex, which first invested in Car Next Door in 2016.
They soon got to work on trialling at marketing campaign in which Car Next Door was advertised at the pump at Caltex service stations, and now have Car Next Door vehicles parked at service stations.
Car Next Door reported it now has 60,000 members on board, and has paid out $5 million to vehicle owners.
Image: Will Davies. Source: Supplied.