AMSTERDAM — According to Omar El Defrawy, co-founder and CEO of Egypt-based car reconditioner market Sylndr, the company initially launched c-to-b sales in April 2022, later expanding to b-to-c and b-to-b.

The average selling price of its used cars is around $20,000 U.S., due in large part to the high levels of customs duties in Egypt. “Margins are much higher in emerging markets [than in developed ones],” he noted.”

Sylndr is currently selling around 150 vehicles a month and has around 200 employees.

The company operates a single location in Cairo but is planning to add a second by the end of this year.

In Egypt, consumers always want to see a car in person before they buy it due to a chronic lack of trust, El Defrawy said, but he added that they were prepared to travel a significant distance to do so — up to 100km or even 150km.

Moreover, “Car histories are non-existent,” he noted.

Sylndr can also add value for consumers — by doing “the operational stuff that is a hassle for people” — e.g. going to a notary to change ownership — El Defrawy noted.

“We want to become the most trusted partner in the market for both consumers and dealers,” El Defrawy said.

The company does refurbishing and inspections in-house, rather than outsourcing them.

“We own stock,” he said, noting that this was the antithesis of the investment banker creed of “asset-light, outsource” (El Defrawy is a former investment banker).

El Defrawy said that Sylndr had raised around $60 million U.S. in equity and $50 million in equity to date.

He said that reaching a point where the company did not have to raise more capital would represent “a major milestone,” although he did not rule out raising additional capital to drive growth.

He was speaking on the second day of the AIM Group’s AutosBuzz conference.

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