AMSTERDAM — Speaking on a panel moderated by AIM Group strategy director Konstantin Kalabin at the AutosBuzz conference, Mobile.de CEO Ajay Bhatia, CarSwitch founder Imad Hammad and Jens Hauglum, chief product officer at Schibsted’s Mobility subsidiary, discussed the importance of consumer concentricity in used car sales and how AI could facilitate this.

Germany-based Mobile.de is a subsidiary of Norway-based Adevinta; CarSwitch is based in the UAE; Schibsted is based in Norway and operates throughout the Nordic region.

Bhatia noted that c-to-c was often underdeveloped but that this varied by geography. 

He added that c-to-c transactions tended to be neglected in larger, more mature markets, creating a space for entrepreneurs to solve problems that larger players hadn’t. 

Bhatia said that as c-to-c had traditionally been a relatively lower-margin business, it had not been that attractive to marketplaces, but he added that this would change as AI brought down costs: AI “will absolutely play a role” in helping large players deal with c-to-c, he said. 

Hammad commented that “AI has raised expectations,” with consumers expecting instant responses to queries, for example. He noted that AI had enabled his company to reduce its headcount by a quarter, as tasks previously only performed by humans were becoming increasingly automated. 

Hauglum said there was “no one-size-fits-all” solution, and that he saw his company’s task as “[taking] a step back and offering different options to private sellers … and guide them to the right channel” Those options include auctions and trade-ins. 

He noted that Schibsted had launched a full transactional journey in automotive last year and that it had reached a 5% adoption rate among its users.

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