By James Shomar | StartFast Program Director
SpinCar’s $22 million recapitalization is largest financing for downtown Syracuse business in over a decade
StartFast Venture Accelerator recorded its biggest win to date with the announcement of a $22 million investment in its portfolio company, SpinCar. The capital infusion from Boston-based Wavecrest Growth Partners created a 20-times (2,000%) return for the StartFast investors, and has positioned SpinCar to continue its triple-digit annual growth rate. With its headquarters in Syracuse, SpinCar’s growth is creating new job opportunities for the region’s college graduates as well.
SpinCar, the global leader in digital automotive merchandising software founded by Syracuse area natives Devin Daly and Michael Quigley. Their financing round included participation from auto and tech industry veterans David Metter and Harpreet Grewal. The new capital will be used to fund company growth and continued investment in product innovation to meet accelerating market demand for digital automotive merchandising technologies.
This capital will allow us to bring new products to market faster, enhance the services we provide to our customers and partners, and expand our world-class team. – Devin Daly, CEO, Spincar
According to StartFast Managing Director Nasir Ali, “This is a great win for SpinCar, our investors and Syracuse’s emerging tech community. StartFast investors and mentors believed that high-growth companies can succeed in Syracuse, and they supported SpinCar every step of the way. Now SpinCar is one more fast-growing employer anchoring the Warren Street tech corridor from the Tech Garden to the State Tower building.”
“We are incredibly proud of Devin and Michael’s success,” added StartFast Managing Director Chuck Stormon. “These two founders showed us how committed they are to succeeding during the program, and that determination and intelligence has now borne fruit. It has been wonderful to see these two young entrepreneurs develop into seasoned leaders right here in Syracuse.”
SpinCar’s digital automotive merchandising platform leverages advanced 360° display technology and proprietary behavioral data to reinvent the way in which dealers, OEMs and third-party automotive marketplaces engage with car shoppers. The platform transforms static online merchandising content into immersive, VR-enabled experiences, complete with virtual interior and exterior tours as well as tagged, touchable hotspots that allow consumers to explore key vehicle features in rich detail. By capturing precise vehicle and feature interaction data in real-time, SpinCar enables dealers to personalize every consumer touch based on the specific needs and interests of individual shoppers. SpinCar’s VINtelligent Retargeting solution delivers the industry’s most personalized digital ad units for greater marketing effectiveness along the entire car buying journey. Dealers using the SpinCar platform report greater than 30% increases in online consumer engagement and conversion rates, as well as 20 – 30% faster inventory turnover, particularly for used and certified pre-owned vehicles.
Capital regional based serial entrepreneur and former SpinCar board member John Miller continued the sentiment: “I met Devin and Mike as a StartFast mentor in 2013, and I was immediately drawn to their passion for the business. Helping them understand the applications of their technology to online car sales, and navigate the path to building an amazing sales organization has been an exhilarating ride!”
“In a world where consumers are just a click or swipe away from a myriad of information sources and alternative purchasing options, every digital interaction for a car shopper represents a critical moment in the purchase journey. SpinCar is enabling local and national auto dealers to bring the personalized showroom experience directly to prospective car buyers wherever and whenever they want. Our platform is generating measurable results for dealers of all sizes, and this investment will enable us to expand our industry reach at an even faster rate,” said Devin Daly, SpinCar Co-Founder and CEO. “Wavecrest’s customer-first approach and unrivaled B2B SaaS experience make them the perfect partner for our next phase of growth. We’re excited to work with their team and network of operators as we accelerate our efforts. This capital will allow us to bring new products to market faster, enhance the services we provide to our customers and partners, and expand our world-class team.”
This SpinCar financing is the largest in a recent series of Syracuse-based private tech company transactions (collectively over $50 million raised by Density, TCGplayer, Ichor Therapeutics, and Plowz & Mowz). This trend is driven by a record number of regional business leaders becoming actively engaged in the local entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Every successful entrepreneur can point to a small group of people that were critical to their early success. StartFast provides business leaders an opportunity to support promising entrepreneurs, like Devin and Michael, that could transform the region.
Describing the investment, Deepak Sindwani, Managing Partner at Wavecrest Growth Partners said, “SpinCar provides market-leading technology to a very large industry in the throes of digital disruption. We were impressed with the company’s value proposition, business performance and unique data assets. We look forward to partnering with Devin and his team to transform the way that vehicles get purchased.”
In addition to Deepak, Harpreet Grewal and David Metter have also joined the company’s board of directors. Harpreet is a 30-year veteran of SaaS businesses, with particular expertise in selling to SMBs. Most recently, he served as General Manager/CEO of Constant Contact after the company’s $1.1 billion sale to Endurance International in 2015. Previously, he was a 5-time CFO of public and private SaaS companies. David is the co-founder and President of AutoHook, which was acquired by Urban Science in 2015. David is a frequent speaker on the topic of digital innovation at auto dealer conferences, including the North American Dealer Association (NADA) show.
Presidio Technology Partners acted as the financial advisor to SpinCar on the transaction.