Berlin-based Auto1 Group, the fast-growing used car dealer, has raised €255 million ($300 million U.S.) from investors. The company said on Thursday it would use the money to expand its retail brand, Autohero.

“With Autohero, our mission is to create the best way to buy a car. We want to make car buying as easy, enjoyable and comfortable as it should be,” said Christian Bertermann, Auto Group co-CEO.

The funds came in the form of convertible notes, with the funding round being led by Farallon Capital Management and the Baupost Group. Existing shareholders also participated.

Demand for used cars is on the rise again after the coronavirus pandemic brought the markets to a standstill in March. “People perceive their cars as a safe place in this pandemic,” Bertermann told Reuters. “The market came out strong — we aren’t yet at pre-COVID levels but we are close.”

Founded in 2012, Auto1 is active in around 30 countries across Europe. In 2019, the company grew revenue by 21% year-on-year to €3.5 billion ($4.1 million U.S.) by increasing the number of traded cars via its European c-to-b brands, Auto1.com and Autohero. Since its launch eight years ago, Auto1 Group has traded more than two million cars.

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