KAR Auction Services said last week that it has completed its purchase of CarsOnTheWeb, a digital wholesale auction platform out of Belgium.
The agreement to purchase COTW was first announced Nov. 28.
The purchase was for roughly 91 million euros in cash, plus as much as 65 million euros more (over time) based on certain terms and conditions as well as performance by COTW, KAR said.
“Now part of the KAR family, CarsOnTheWeb will help fuel our continued international growth with the power to deliver innovative, digitally connected services to our global customers,” said Benjamin Skuy, KAR’s executive vice president for international markets and strategic initiatives, in a news release.
“CarsOnTheWeb is already the leading cross-border automotive remarketing platform in Continental Europe,” Skuy said. “And together with KAR’s technology, data, ancillary service capabilities and strong industry relationships, we will lead and accelerate the evolution of the European marketplace.”
The COTW online auction marketplace is designed to connected automakers, fleet owners, wholesalers and dealers in 50-plus countries, KAR said. It has sales operations in Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain.
COTW provides various auction, transport and related services to sellers in those six nations and buyers throughout Europe.
There are parts of KAR’s existing business that it can “layer on” to this digital wholesale auction platform, KAR chief executive Jim Hallett said shortly after the deal was first announced.
“Our strategy has been to focus on being asset light,” Hallett said of how KAR has expanded internationally. “With the online model or digital model, it’s very easy to expand and to grow into the future. With that said, you take the existing platform that CarsOnTheWeb is operating off of now, we feel that we have assets that we can layer on.”
The CarsArrive transportation and logistics services first come to mind, Hallett said, but the possibilities elsewhere in KAR’s business are deep, too.
“You think about the company we acquired a few years back, DRIVIN, and the data and analytics that we’re doing here in North America. CarsOnTheWeb has their own data and analytics, but now we can add even more horsepower (to) that data and analytics and actually cast a wider net,” Hallett said.
“And then you think about some of the technologies that we have here in North America that may enhance the technology at CarsOnTheWeb, whether that be anything from what we’re doing within OPENLANE to what we’re doing within TradeRev to what we’re doing within ADESA.com — all those things have the opportunity to enhance the overall service offerings that currently are being offered by CarsOnTheWeb,” he said.
COTW will retain its key operating locations, employees and key leadership/management. It will be a wholly owned subsidiary of KAR.