AutoTrip have created a connected device which automates the recording of business mileage: saving organisations up to 35% of their car fleet costs. With patents pending, they were nominated as one of the top 40 cleantech businesses in 2014 and have grown their user-base by 750% in 2015. They are led by Andrew Wordsworth, founder of E-Car Club: the world’s first Crowdfunding exit which yielded a multiple return to investors within 3-years.
AutoTrip provides the UK’s 6 million business drivers with self-install internet connected devices, saving their organisations up to 35% on their car fleet costs by automating the recording and reporting of their business mileage. We believe the resulting fleet connectivity positions AutoTrip at the forefront of “The Internet of Cars”, sitting atop a wealth of monetisable opportunities for data provision and analytics. Having doubled our customer base in Q4 2015, filed new IP and developed a scalable B2B route to market, AutoTrip is now seeking investment to capitalise on the market opportunity by expanding its sales operations and extending its technology advantage.
Our Chairman & Co-Founder is Andrew Wordsworth. Andrew provides extensive connected fleet experience having sold E-Car Club to Europcar in July 2015 as Crowdcube’s first exit – delivering a multiple return to investors within 3 years. Our lead investor is Simon Drury, who has over 25 years pan-European private equity experience as a Founder and Partner of Adaixa Capital and a former Partner of Charterhouse Capital Partners.
- Customers: In 2015, AutoTrip grew its organisational user-base by 750% from 7 to 50 organisations.
- Partnerships & PR: AutoTrip has been featured by Fleet News and has secured over 30 business-to-business channel partners to actively resell AutoTrip’s product.
- Grant Funding: The business has secured over £135,000 in non-dilutive grant funding from Innovate UK Awards. The Company was showcased by the Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership in 2014, as well as being nominated as one of the top 40 cleantech businesses in 2014 by Cleantech Innovate.
- Intellectual Property: In addition to our core software, AutoTrip has a registered trademark (as of October 10th 2014), has patents pending on the privacy settings, and achieved additional patent pending status on near field communication technology at the end of 2015.
- Team: In 2015 AutoTrip strengthened their team through hiring a commercial director and a senior board member.
Development to date has been funded by Crowdcube investors (with our target reached in under a week of launching last January), and Sustainable Venture Development Partners, a hybrid venture capital/incubation firm focused on sustainable business model design, which will continue to provide acceleration support during this scale up stage.
Businesses across the UK depend on up to 6 million people driving to conduct their activities, either using their own vehicles or company cars. In order for these drivers to benefit from the tax-allowances available for business travel expenses, they must submit mileage records to their employers and accountants. For the vast majority, logging mileage claims is a manual activity that takes on average two hours per month to complete. AutoTrip automates this process with a combination of in-car hardware and cloud-based software, reducing this monthly time requirement to less than 5 minutes whilst also ensuring a higher degree of accuracy.
Our product consists of a low-cost, self-install device that plugs into the “on-board diagnostics” port, found in most vehicles manufactured since the mid-90s. The device records journey details using the GPS network, and uploads them to AutoTrip’s cloud-based software using its own internal GSM connection. Driver privacy is protected by ensuring that only trips approved by the driver as business related are visible to employers. AutoTrip is a B2B subscription based service, and is designed to offer an average payback-period to the employer of under 4-months.
By automating and digitising mileage records, AutoTrip is able to bring accuracy and clarity to data that was previously resource-intensive to collect and prone to errors. In addition to speeding up the reporting process – from a UK average of 2 hours per month to under 5 minutes – Gfleet estimates that accurate and time-efficient mileage reporting can lead to cost savings of up to 35% from three main areas:
- Increased productivity through reducing overhead time-costs for both employees and administrative staff
- Reduced mileage expenses due to increased accuracy
- Reduced fuel card costs
Once we have established a meaningful market share for our core product in car fleets (across the UK & Europe) via our highly efficient B2B sales channel, we will accelerate expansion with the introduction of additional software services as a result of having footholds of connected hardware in vehicles (the ‘Internet of Cars’ phenomena) – for example products addressing smart insurance, fleet productivity, carbon reduction and employee duty of care.
The proceeds from this A-round investment will be used as follows:
- To make new hires to the sales & marketing team, including a Head of Network Development (channel partner recruitment).
- To develop additional software functionality and integration with popular APIs (application programmming interfaces – i.e. being able to seamlessly connect with external accounting software)
- To commence build on our patent pending mobile App to better target the low-mileage driver segment.
The balance will be made available for testing expansion opportunities in the UK and Europe.
We are aiming to enhance investor returns by leveraging non-dilutive grant funding and using the tax efficient EIS scheme. Base case projections envisage over 200,000 drivers using AutoTrip’s product across the UK & Europe within 5-years, delivering a return greater than a 10X to investors of this round.