8 Jan 15

COTW celebrates 10 years

CarsOnTheWeb, the pan-European online car auction site for car dealers and traders, is celebrating its 10th anniversary.

On December 1st 2004, the first car was sold on the online auction platform of CarsOnTheWeb. Steven Lismont, founder of CarsOnTheWeb and experienced second hand car wholesaler, remembers the early days of CarsOnTheWeb. “Before the launch, we used to send lists to car traders and they would reply with their prices by fax. Because prices were processed manually, some customers occasionally missed out on the cars they wanted. The need to receive prices electronically and in real time, ultimately lead to the creation of the car auction site.”

The   used leasing vehicles market changed rapidly and leasing companies were wanting to diversify their sales channels. CarsOnTheWeb was complete solution for these leasing companies. Alphabet was the first to participate and is now a strategic partner.


Since those early years, CarsOnTheWeb has gained a lot of experience. Pieter Behets, one of the first employees and now Country Manager for Belgium, comments: “The early days were exciting. It soon became apparent that the concept did well in Belgium but we realised we had to work at a European level to be truly successful. In 2006, our company was awarded the ICT Trends Award as a promising SME. That same year we opened a branch in Germany. A year later, France and Italy followed”.

Today CarsOnTheWeb has offices in 6 countries, sales volumes that exceed 28,000 units per year and buyers in more than 50 countries. In addition to its sales activities, it also organises transportation to numerous destinations. The photo shows the Tienen (Belgium) depot

Authored by: Tim Harrup