Car retailer drives off with Seneca investment
A multichannel car retailer, set up by the co-founder of online car business Jamjar, has secured investment from Haydock-based Seneca Partners.
The investment management and corporate advisory business has bought a £1m stake in Rockar.
The business, which claims to be the first of its kind in the auto industry, was founded by Simon Dixon and offers an online and in-store service that allows customers to research, test-drive, purchase and service a new car without ever having to speak to a salesperson.
The Rockar business model is an evolution of Jamjar's online-only proposition. Customers can choose and personalise their cars online, and test drive them at Rockar's first showroom in the Bluewater shopping centre in Kent.
The company has a ten-year lease on the 2,000 sq ft sales space – which is in one of Europe's busiest shopping centres – together with a nearby service centre.
Richard Manley, director at Seneca Partners, said: "Rockar's integrated business model meets perfectly the two big trends in car retail – the overwhelming majority of buyers now do all their research online, and many are intimidated by conventional dealerships with pushy sales staff."
Rockar has launched in partnership with Hyundai cars, and stocks the entire range of the popular Korean brand's vehicles. Partnerships with other marques are set to follow, the business said.
Seneca Partners was advised by Jon Gillow of the Manchester office of the law firm Hill Dickinson.