Photobox Founders Set Sights on Sharing Economy With New Investment into HiyaCar the ‘Airbnb’ for Motor Vehicles

Entrepreneurs / 28th June 2016

Mark Chapman and Graham Hobson, the co-founders of Photobox, the online photo printing company, have both invested capital into the new person-to-person car-lending platform HiyaCar on equity crowdfunding platform Seedrs.

HiyaCar has been trading since February 2016 and has now raised more than £550’000 with over 400 investors across two successful crowdfunding rounds on Seedrs in the last 12 months, overfunding on both occasions.

HiyaCar is a new player in the Sharing Economy but has bold plans to make a big impact on their competitors with the latest investment and advice on expansion from Chapman and Hobson.

Mark Chapman, Founder of Photobox commented: “I’m delighted to be making an investment in HiyaCar. I believe a great combination of well thought out strategy and an able, passionate team will deliver a leading business in what is a rapidly developing market.”

The service aims to turn the millions of private cars sitting idle on drives and streets into a virtual fleet of cars for hire. This gives hirers more choice, convenience and value for money, whilst car owners are able to turn their car into a second source of income that could even pay for the cost of the car.

HiyaCar Co-Founders Robert Larmour and Graeme Risby said: “We are delighted that Mark and Graham have invested in HiyaCar alongside the hundreds of Seedrs investors. To have such respected, high-caliber entrepreneurs who really understand the space is a massive vote of confidence. Photobox has given Mark and Graham first-hand experience of building a leading online marketplace. Their knowledge and input will be an invaluable contribution to HiyaCar and we are thrilled that they are joining us on this exciting journey.”

In its simplest form, the ‘Sharing Economy’ helps people make the most of the things that they have. This means a new way of living and a new way of spending money.

Letting someone walk your dog, filling your spare room or making use of your unused car are all ways the public can be a part of the ‘Sharing Economy’. The potential to earn on your unused assets has really flourished in the past 4-5 years – the arrival and growth of Airbnb has allowed users to become more comfortable with the idea of sharing. Recent data even shows that renting out a car that is typically left unused can earn someone up to £2,000 a month.

Graeme Risby added: “HiyaCar aims to disrupt the $60bn global car hire industry, which in the UK consisted of more than 10 million car hires in the last 12 months. We want to empower communities to build better lives by enabling more financial freedom by sharing an idle asset as well as giving users the freedom to hit the open road when they’ve not previously had easy access to a car. It is an exciting and socially rewarding sector to be a part of.”

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