CarFix is a Russian tech start-up that is establishing an online platform to connect car owners, repairers and parts distributors while providing price transparency and consistency for repairs. The company recently announced it would begin to issue Vehicle Lifecycle Blockchain tokens to establish reliable repair records and price information, allowing for secure transactions among customers, dealerships, insurance companies and the automotive repair industry.
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Aftermarket Business World spoke to Vladimir Lupenko, co-founder and chief operating officer, about the solution.
Q: How will the use of blockchain technology improve vehicle repair transactions?
A: Our main objective was to simplify the use of blockchain. With our use of blockchain, we can reduce the claims management cost to insurance companies or customer acquisition costs for other entities. Blockchain provides a tailor-made approach to provide a clear history of the car and the driver.
Blockchain can also reduce the cost of recalls by limiting the recall to specific vehicles that are affected. Car owners will have a clear history of all the damages and insurance claims made on a car they want to buy on the secondary market.
Q: How will the use of the blockchain tokens work with repair shops and parts suppliers?
A: A repair shop that is working with a blockchain interface can provide information to the insurance company, for example. The car manufacturer is made aware if there is a warranty claim, and all of this is recorded simultaneously. This can help reduce warranty fraud cases originated at repair shops.
If the warranty is expired, the repair shop still records the transaction in blockchain to update the vehicle history.
Right now, CarFix includes a software system that has a database of all the spare parts needed for repair and maintenance. The shop puts a VIN number into our internet platform, which connects to spare parts distributors. We know through our algorithm what SKU is needed for the part. We provide an instant price set by the distributors. We provide transparent prices, and we also know how many labor hours are required. The customer can book the car repair after looking at those prices.
Currently, CarFix gets 15 percent for each repair that is booked. Once we launch the blockchain tokens, there will be paying participants in the network – car manufacturers, insurance companies, repair shops, etc. Car owners are non-paying participants.
Q: What are the benefits for repairers and distributors?
A: There is a reduction in customer acquisition cost. Car owners will go primarily to shops that are connected to blockchain to make sure their history is maintained and transparent. Insurance companies will also direct traffic to repair shops who use this blockchain solution. Distributors will also increase sales volume of spare parts that are driven by the participation of these repair shops.
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