Former Agency Execs Launch Car Service Summon

Former Agency Execs Launch Car Service Summon
B&T Magazine
Edited by B&T Magazine

Former agency executives Tim O’Neill and Tim Fouhy have launched the auto technology startup Summon. Australia’s first full e-commerce service for prestige cars.

O’Neill and Fouhy both founded Reactive, a digital agency, which was bought by Accenture in 2016. Following the deal, O’Neill and Fouhy ended up leading the company’s digital marketing arm, Accenture Interactive before founding Summon

Summon offers car enthusiasts a completely contactless way to buy and sell vehicles privately. The new offering, which is available in Melbourne, Sydney, Gold Coast and Brisbane, builds on Summon’s existing concierge service, which focuses on cars valued at over $50,000.

Since launching in 2020 they have sold over 85 cars to the total value of $8 million.

The new e-commerce service digitises the entire car buying process. It replaces a test drive — which is not possible during lockdowns — with a variety of other digital alternatives and a money-back guarantee on delivery. Until now, this has not been available to private sellers, only to car dealers and auction houses.

The launch has capitalised on the increase in prices of used cars, which due to supply constraints triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic have risen 34 per cent in the past 12 months according to the latest Moody Analytics data.

The average price of cars sold on the Summon platform is $94,000.

The eCommerce service includes:

  • Up to 100 professional photos of each car are listed with shots of the interior, exterior and engine.
  • A Redbook Remote Inspection of the car – an independent quality check for the car.
  • A live virtual inspection of the vehicle with the buyer and seller.
  • The ability to arrange a third-party mechanical inspection of the car prior to purchase.
  • Virtual completion of the deal via phone and email.
  • Either contactless delivery of the vehicle or click and collect alternative.
  • A money-back guarantee if the buyer is not completely satisfied with the vehicle on final inspection

Tim O’Neill, co-founder and CEO of Summon, said:“This new Australian-first service is the safest most comprehensive way to buy a prestige car privately during the lockdown,”

“Selling your car privately is a fantastic alternative to just selling your car to a dealer and losing on average 15 per cent of the value of your asset.

“We manage the entire process for the seller, and work with them to achieve the best possible value for their car.”

“For buyers, there is no better way on the market to buy a prestige car privately during the lockdown. We’ve worked hard to ensure the service is not only safe but comprehensive, covering everything you need to know while offering you the ability to ask for more information or clarification at any time.

“Dealers and OEMs are starting to provide ways to sell cars online due to ongoing lockdowns, but 50 per cent of used cars in Australia are sold privately.

“We saw there was a gap in providing a safe way to sell cars online for people who wish to sell their car privately.

“Last year’s lockdowns triggered this change in approach for Summon, and now we’re ahead of the curve in assisting the private buying and selling of prestige cars, in what is a logistically difficult period to do so.”

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Summon Tim Fouhy Tim O'Neil

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