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Carmudi , the vehicle marketplace that offers buyers, sellers and car dealers the ideal platform to find cars, motorcycles and commercial vehicles online embarks on measures to improve its partnership with motor dealers
Carmudi Nigeria, the largest online car market in the country on Saturday, March 22, took a giant step forward in its efforts to create a better working relationship with dealers on its site. On that day, management and staff of the company carried out a community relations service (CRS) by giving the Berger Automobile market, along Oshodi-Apapa Expressway, Lagos, a face lift. It is reputed to be the largest car market in West Africa.
Christian Keller, Managing Director, Carmudi Nigeria said that his company took the initiative to paint the Berger market, repair the area, and improve on the operations of the dealers at the Berger Automobile market. According to him, the initiative was meant to create a synergy between Carmudi and the dealers. “The dealers of Berger Automobile market are very important to us, 5,000 to 10,000 cars are in the Berger market for sale. Almost one-third of the people in Carmudi go to Berger Automobile market to buy cars, therefore, we need to have an intense relationship with them,” he said. According to him, Carmudi is currently revolutionizing the way cars are being sold; taking car-shopping experience to a whole new different dimension.
Presently, there are more than 400 dealers who have their cars registered among the more than 40, 000 listed on Carmudi website.
Following Carmudi Nigeria’s efforts in bringing convenience to online car shoppers, the car-listing firm had on February 28, organised a tour of the United Berger Market in Lagos for stakeholders in the industry.
Speaking at the event, Keller said that Nigerians used to be subjected to driving around major cities in search of the right car to suit their budget and taste, but since the emergence of online marts, the story had changed. He noted that people only need to sit in the convenience of their homes, offices or any other locations and search through thousands of new, fairly used (tokunbo) and Nigerian-used vehicles to buy.
The tour created avenue for stakeholders to meet with car dealers to discuss the issues affecting the tokunbo car market in Nigeria such as government policies, the economy, as well as take a tour of the market.
Metche Nnadiekwe, president, United Berger Motor Dealers Association described the emergence of Carmudi as blessing for car dealers in Lagos in particular and Nigeria at large as it was in tandem with globalisation. “The world is changing and we have to change our business pattern to especially embrace the world of technology. We are enjoying the partnership with Carmudi because it helps in sensitizing the customers, using the power of the internet,” he said.
He explained that through the internet they communicate with customers in all parts of the country and this has eased the business for car dealers. “Since we entered into partnership with Carmudi, a lot of activities have been going on here. Before now, we never believed that Nigerians could go to the internet searching for cars to buy, call to confirm with you and probably visit the depot to make purchases. We can buy or place orders to American firms for cars through the internet too. It makes the business convenient and efficient, removing a lot of middleman interfaces that had in the past caused people pains,” Nnadiekwe told TheEconomy.
However, the biggest challenge in the online car market, according to Keller, is the issue of trust both from the buyers and the sellers. “Buyers need to understand that actually we are offering them a free service, it helps them by directly connecting them to the dealers. Dealers need to trust us because there are a lot of scammers around that will come to them and take photographs of their cars somewhere and sell them for whatever. These events are measures to build trust with the communities we are dealing with,” he said.
By Pita Ochai