Start-Up of the Year Fixico: "Winning was a team effort"
Fixico looks back on its victory of the 2018 Smart Mobility Start-Up Awards.
We are approaching our Smart Mobilility Start-Up Awards in November in Estoril. While looking for new startups to apply, we have a look at how our previous winners are doing. What have they achieved since their victory and where are they going? The first in the series is last year's winner, Fixico, and CEO Derk Roodhuyzen de Vries gives us an update.
Can you introduce Fixico in 1 sentence?
Fixico combines its advanced end-to-end handling platform with one of Europe’s largest and fastest-growing independent repair networks to offer fleet, insurance and rental companies an innovative and fully digital way to handle car repairs.
How does your Fixico serve fleet managers?
Traditional damage handling usually means a time-consuming back and forth between fleet managers, drivers and repair shops. Our digital solutions efficiently streamline workflows, minimising manual activities and offering a seamless claim handling journey. Fleet managers use Fixico to boost driver satisfaction, reduce cycle times, lower repair costs, gain real-time insight and have full control at every step of the way.
Describe Fixico at the beginning of the Smart Mobility Start-up Award the year you participated, and what have you reached since then?
Last month we have raised €7 million from Silicon-valley based investor Autotech Ventures to grow our international footprint, foster more fleet and insurance partnerships and further strengthen our B2B solutions.
This latest investment round brings the total funding for Fixico to €14.3 million. Autotech Ventures is known for their early backing of Lyft (a top competitor of Uber) and other successful startups like Frontier Car Group and Outdoorsy. With Autotech Ventures, we have a unique partner on board that will empower us to become a top European player in the digital damage repair space.
How has Fixico evolved in the meantime?
Our product is constantly in development and is driven by the latest technological advancements. Currently, we are creating some very promising and exciting features that use AI technology. Besides this, we have implemented personalised car repair handling processes for all of our fleet clients and introduced a digital steering mechanism to easily allocate repairs based on preset criteria such as OEM requirements.
How many employees were and are working for Fixico?
Fixico is growing fast and so is our team. In only a year's time, we grew from 40 to more than 60 employees and we expect an even faster growth in the coming year.
Where were and are you active now?
Fixico is currently active in the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium and South Africa and in the coming year, we are poised to rapidly scale up further across Europe. Last year, we have successfully launched Fixico in Belgium, together with our insurance partner AXA. Currently, we are organising several launching partner-based expansions to new countries.
Who are your main consumers and partners?
Thanks to our strong foothold in the consumer space, we made our first decisive steps in the international business-to-business market in 2018.
In a relatively short time, we have seen an impressive uptake in fleet and insurance partners, and among many others, international players like AXA and AON are using our platform to offer a fully digital damage handling proposition to their customers. Over the last few months, we have launched multiple successful pilots and are currently in the process of rolling out new promising partnerships with leading companies.
Where do you see Fixico 5 years from now?
We truly believe that the model we are building has the potential to change the market. In the coming 3 years, we will expand to the rest of Europe and in five years, Fixico will be a global market leader in our sector.
What are your plans for the upcoming year?
In the coming year, we will enter new partnerships and strengthen our existing ones. We will expand to new European countries and in doing so increase our international footprint. We will also enhance our B2B solutions further and implement AI driven features to bring new and innovative solutions to the traditional market.
If we lived in a world in which everything is possible – no financial or technical limits – what would you add / change / improve at Fixico at the moment?
We would love to speed up the overall development of technological advancements and possibilities. So that we are able to enhance our solutions even further and at a faster pace. Our aim is to create a fully automated, with no human intervention, digital end-to-end repair handling process by connecting all parties and by harnessing the power of our digital platform and AI.
Can you share a memorable moment of the time after the startup award in the development of Fixico?
We organised a special meeting in our office to announce that we had won the award. Winning it truly was a team effort, so it was only right to celebrate this victory together.
How has the Award helped your business grow?
The award has definitely opened up more doors for us. Fleet Europe is a renowned organisation in the industry and the Start-up of the year award comes with international recognition. An award like this helps validate your business and underlines your success. Internally it serves as a huge boost for morale and functions as a constant reminder that we are on the right path and able to do great things.
What is your most valuable insight you could share with other smart mobility startups?
Generally speaking, startups are always looking to disrupt the industry with ground breaking ideas and exciting perspectives. Sometimes, the industry might give some pushback, it is important not to get discouraged by this. The best insight I could share is to try and really understand the pain points of the industry and to genuinely respect its traditions.
How do you envision the future of Smart Mobility and where does Fixico fits in the picture?
The future of smart mobility is fully dependent on the technological advancements of tomorrow. Right now, I feel that we are at a tipping point. This is the moment where digitalisation shifts from being just a point on the agenda to being fully embraced and implemented. Fixico will do its best to stay ahead of the curve and become a leading example.
Do you want to play a part in the future of smart mobility? Follow into Fixico's footsteps and apply for the Smart Mobility Start Up Awards 2019 in Estoril!