VUMO conquers the US e-market for used cars

The tools offered by the company enable remote inspection and the safe purchase of a used car without being physically present in the store. VUMO started its activity in the American market because the niche it specializes in does not exist in Poland yet.

Sławek Potasz was still studying when he participated in the Microsoft Imagine Cup competition for the most innovative technology. With his tool for automatic image recording, he took second place and received funding from the Meta Ventures fund as an award. He then founded In Motion Labs, looking for applications for his technology in various industries, including photography, medicine, and automation.

In 2018, the startup received $120,000 from the governmental agency PARP for expansion to foreign markets and another $60,000 for creating 20 car imaging scanners a year later. When Michał Laska, who had several years of experience in the automotive industry, joined the company in 2021, the company decided to focus only on it. In the autumn of this year, they collected $600,000 for a start, and about ten business angels joined them.

VUMO creates technology that allows an excellent visual presentation of the car being sold and its remote inspection. Its tools primarily aim at used car dealers, leasing and fleet providers, and insurance companies. The company uses advanced artificial intelligence tools for visualization technology, mainly algorithms based on neural networks. In addition, a semi-autonomous robot with a head is used to photograph the car inside and outside. In the inspection area, autonomous chassis and walk-around scanners will also be introduced to the market, analyzing the paint composition and checking for surface damage, dents, and scratches. As a result, a complete car health report can be generated within five minutes.

For all projects, the company obtained funding in the amount of approx. $1.8M, including $375,000 from the National Center for Research and Development for the development of a robot for chassis inspection, $120,000 from PARP for branding, and then $1M from the National Center for Research and Development for “creation of an innovative self-driving robot for the detection and documentation of car paint damage in real time using image analysis algorithms and active thermography.”

VUMO operates mainly in the US, with 80% of its revenues. Among her customers are Leith, owner of more than 20 large car dealerships, and City of Cars, which won the top prize in the 2022 poll for the best dealer in the United States. In the UK, City Auction Group, one of the UK’s largest car auctions, uses its products. In Poland, for now, only company, because there are no recipients for this technology here.

VUMO is a pioneer in the image inspection of cars, and when it comes to the service of “processing” car photographs, it has several competitors among American startups. However, as the latest blind tests have shown, dealers rated its services the highest. They even won with a large reputable company from India that employs over 100 people. The VUMO crew consists of less than 40.

In 2021, VUMO received a grant from the USA in the amount of approx. $0.5M. He also got into the innovation accelerator in Toronto, where the stake was $120,000. The company was in the top ten out of 1,200 applying startups.

The company sells the service in the SaaS model, which is a very high margin. Just a year ago, at the beginning of its business, it was earning only $1,000 a month, while now almost $100,000!

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