Car Price Comparison Company TrueCar Raises $200M+, Gears Up For IPO

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TrueCar, which publishes real-time vehicle transaction data in the US market for both new and used cars, has secured over $200 million in debt and equity financing to grow the business and explore acquisitions.

TrueCar was one of the finalists of our TechCrunch50 conference back in 2008.

The capital injection comes from existing investors USAA, Capricorn Investment Group, GRP Partners and Silicon Valley Bank (which provided the debt funding). New investors include Keating Capital, GSV Asset Management, Passport Capital, McCombs Enterprises, Allen & Company and International Investment House along with strategic investors Guthy Renker and DealerTrack.

The financing announcement comes on the heels of two recent acquisitions made by TrueCar: the recent purchase of Automotive Lease Guide from DealerTrack and the acquisition of CarPerks (which will be announced tomorrow). TrueCar also recently bought Honk.com from News Corporation.

TrueCar says it has helped users buy over 350,000 cars since its inception (20,000 last August alone), in part thanks to the auto buying program partnerships it built with the likes of Farm Bureau, American Express and US Bank.

Previous backers of TrueCar have opted to exchange their preferred stock for common stock on a 1-for-1 basis, while the new investors purchased common stock, the company says in a statement.

Said Stan Shuman of Allen & Co:

β€œIt is refreshing to see such astounding performance and profitable growth – the TrueCar team and business is poised to transform one of the largest and most dysfunctional retail categories in America.”

TrueCar is headquartered in Santa Monica, California and has offices in San Francisco. The company was founded in 2005 and has been self-reportedly running a profit since 2009.

A source tells Reuters that the next step for the company is an IPO, slated for the first half of 2012.