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A regional car retail beast is born! Mexico’s Kavak and Argentina’s Checkars merge

Don't worry, we speak : Español (Spanish), too!

Contxto – Today (26), we witnessed the birth of Latin America’s largest used car retailer. In an announcement forwarded early to Contxto, we can now confirm that Kavak and Checkars are to fuse.

Checkars, now to become Mexican Kavak’s Argentine subsidiary, will receive a US$10 million investment to expand the operation, hire 300 new employees, and install a technology hub.

Furthermore, the deal ensures that 100 percent of the investors, Founders, the local team of 50 in Argentina are kept. Alongside Checkars’ platform, complete catalog of cars, and technology which are to be integrated into Kavak Holdings. 

With this fusion, buying and selling used cars in Latin America has truly become an inter-regional affair. With its newfangled Argentine arm, Kavak has become the largest regional company for e-commerce in used cars.

Rev up your Checkars

Checkars was the first guaranteed used car e-commerce in Argentina. The company’s Argentinean founders, Jaime Macaya and Juan Cruz de la Rúa, now follow in the footsteps of OLX—the Argentine unicorn they both once worked in—to join the slew of regional acquisitions making waves across Latam.

The announcement of the merger with Kavak, a leading firm in the used car market in Mexico, came at a time when Checkars had proved its mettle. Its 24-hour, online car purchase solution proved to work wonders even over the course of strict quarantines.

Furthermore, after two years, Checkars has consistently exceeded its own growth forecasts. It added 1,500 transactions and reached an annual turnover of US$8 million in 2019.

The trend was clearly identified and rewarded just over a year ago when the startup landed US$1.3 million led by Jaguar Ventures. And, of course, they also formed part of the YC 2020 Winter Batch earlier this year. 

Takes two to tango: The Kavak Checkars dance

Doubtless, all these achievements attracted Kavak’s attention, who’s own market managed to sustain triple-digit growth levels during the first half of 2020.

Kavak, two years Checkar’s senior and founded in Mexico, is led by Carlos García and is a Softbank, Kaszek, and GreenOaks-backed company. It arrived in Argentina and so it was only a matter of time before the two started gazing suggestively at each other or were at each other’s throats.

Luckily, the former option prevailed:

We clearly understood that, instead of defending our own business, it was convenient to unite talent to form a regional operation with Kavak capable of transforming the used car buying experience throughout Latin America.

Jaime Macaya, Checkars co-Founder

In accordance with the expansion plans, Kavak announced that it will maintain its focus on the development of the operation in Argentina, where it will spend its newly gained US$10 million investment to expand operational capacities, strengthen their local team with up to 300 new hires, and install a technology hub for the entire region.

-AG

Alejandro González Ormerod
Historian, writer, and editor from Mexico City. He was a book publisher, academic, and cheesemonger before joining Contxto. Still deciding on which Latin American country to visit next; food and fun are the main criteria.

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