RAVIN.AI, a developer of vehicle inspection technologies, recently announced an investment round led by Fraser McCombs Capital, while also bringing on auto industry executive Jim O’Brien as its Americas general manager.
The company said in a news release it plans on using the funding round for North American growth and to further develop its platform.
Participants in this funding round also included former General Motors chief executive Rick Wagoner, Mobileye chief scientist Gideon Stein, Group 1 Automotive co-founder Kevin Whalen, former Accenture head of automotive Richard Spitzer and the OurCrowd investment platform.
The company’s existing investors include PICO Venture Partners (which was one of the early investors in the now publicly traded Vroom) and the venture arm of Shell Oil.
Ravin’s platform uses artificial intelligence to inspect the condition of vehicles and its technology is based on mobile phone- and CCTV-style cameras.
Its primary customers across the globe are rental car companies, leasing fleets, auctions and auto retailers in the used-car space.
Ravin’s recently launched Inspect mobile app allows vehicles to be physically scanned without having to install hardware.
As it grows in North America, leading the charge will be O’Brien, who in his role as GM for the Americas will head up the company’s partnerships in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Latin America. He will also lead the commercial rollout of Ravin’s artificial intelligence vehicle inspection product suite in North America.
O’Brien was most recently a used-car leader with Audi of America. His experience also includes time with BMW Financial Services, OPENLANE, TrueCar and Sonic Automotive.
O’Brien will report to Eliron Ekstein, who is CEO and founder of the company.
“Ravin is growing rapidly in response to evolving market needs and Jim’s knowledge of and experience within the many channels where Ravin provides value for customers make him uniquely qualified to lead Ravin in North America,” Ekstein said in a news release.
“We are seeing the remarketing industry transition from costly, labor intensive snapshots and human judgments of a vehicle’s condition, to easy-to-capture, lightweight, artificial intelligence-based reports that can dramatically reduce report variation and expense,” Ekstein said. “The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated the willingness of consumers to rely even more heavily on virtual interactions, including remote inspections to assess vehicle condition and value. Inspection solutions such as Ravin’s mobile app makes it easier than ever to evaluate a vehicle and offer the added benefit of consistent observations and grading.”
O’Brien said in the release: “I am incredibly excited to join the innovation leader in AI-based vehicle inspections at a time when this groundbreaking technology can be rapidly deployed to customers. It’s an honor to join the Ravin team and together roll-out these new, machine-based inspection approaches.
“It’s fairly well known in the industry that inspection reports can vary greatly based on the inherently subjective nature of human observations of the vehicle. We know this variation means money and added time for our customers,” he said. “When a new technology such as Ravin’s combines improved data capture with superior unit economics, all wrapped in an intuitive mobile-phone based application, driving the adoption of that technology is worthwhile and, frankly, a lot of fun. Ravin’s AI-powered inspections do this and our know-how is being tested and better understood every day.”