For the third consecutive year, Apple tops the list of most innovative companies.
Car Buying of Tomorrow Is Here with Carhound
Billing itself with the tagline "car buying for busy people," Pasadena, Calif.-based startup Carhound has been revolutionizing the new car buying process since it launched in July as an online marketplace that matches car buyers with car dealers.
"Car buyers come to our site, configure the car they want to purchase, and tell us how much they want to pay in less than two minutes," said Carhound's founder, Andrew Liu, 35.
He explains that the Carhound system notifies dealers in its network when car is wanted, and within 48 hours the company usually has multiple dealers providing their best quote.
"The consumer takes the best quote to the dealership and picks up their new car at the guaranteed out-the-door price that we found them." Liu said. "It's free to try and there's no obligation to purchase." The process was designed to eliminate the haggling process typically associated with buying vehicles that many customers detest.
Liu said his process of raising money was free of the usual hassles that startups tend to experience.
"People usually talk about raising money from the 3 Fs in the beginning ... friends, family, and fools," he said. "In our case, I raised $135,000, 25% of which came from my class at the Wharton School of Business. I actually had to cut classmates off from investing because I put a cap on the number of investors."
Now, Liu is out to raise $500,000 from either angel investors or venture capitalists. He says, "All the time, I hear about two twenty-something year old kids out of Stanford raising $1 million based on a PowerPoint presentation. I guess I'm not that young and I don't have sexy catchwords like 'mobile, social, green, or cloud' in my presentation.'"
But he's not worried. Thousands of people have already visited Carhound's site, and a few hundred have used it to purchase vehicles.