CarWoo allowed would-be car buyers to work with auto dealers semi-anonymously, theoretically freeing them from high-pressure deals by allowing the buyer to walk away at any time. Buyers would enter details about the sort of car they were looking for, and nearby dealers would make their best offers. Buyers could then make counter-offers — still without ever letting the dealer know who they were working with. Only once a buyer accepted a deal would the dealer get access to the buyer’s information.
According to CrunchBase, CarWoo had raised just shy of $11M since launching at the end of 2008.
The company closed its doors with the end of yesterday’s business day, with a “small group” of employees heading on to competitor TrueCar (which the CarWoo team admits ended up being the superior product). The team posted the following announcement on their site this morning:
CarWoo! was founded with a mission to deliver the best car buying experience possible. While CarWoo! is shutting its doors, our commitment to that mission remains as strong as ever.
To that end, a small group of us will be joining TrueCar, the negotiation-free car buying platform. CarWoo! helped hundreds of thousands of car buyers get a better experience. In the spirit of transparency, we believe TrueCar came up with a better way and has emerged as the dominant force in helping to reshape automotive retail. I see an incredible opportunity in this moment in time to take our successes and, equally important, our entrepreneurial learnings and apply it to what we believe will be the brand that forever changes how people buy cars.
I am personally proud to join the stellar group of innovators at TrueCar. Thank you to everyone that gave their heart and soul to CarWoo!. Our passion for building the best possible buying experience lives on.
President and CEO, CarWoo!