Cars24, an e-commerce platform for pre-owned vehicles, recorded a modest growth during the fiscal year ending March 2023. The company, however, managed to curtail its losses with prudent cost control during the last fiscal.
Cars24’s revenue from operations increased by just 7.8% to Rs 5,535 crore in FY23 from Rs 5,136 crore in FY22, according to its consolidated financial statements filed with the Registrar of Companies.
The company generated 93% of its revenue from car sales, which increased by 6.2% to reach Rs 5,164 crore in FY23, up from Rs 4,863 crore in FY22.
Income from Cars24’s financial services doubled in the previous fiscal year.
Interestingly, the company posted profits in this segment as evident from the financial statements of its subsidiary company. Revenue from parking and service fees are some other collection sources for Cars24. See TheKredible to see the detailed revenue breakup.
Having a cash-and-carry model, the cost of procurement of cars accounted for 81% of the overall expenditure. This cost remained flat at Rs 4,926 crore in FY23. Its employee benefits cost decreased by 12.8% to Rs 478 crore in FY23. This includes Rs 97.5 crore as ESOP cost (non-cash).
“By solving for process efficiency, automation and implementing these changes across the organisation, we’ve achieved substantial cost reductions. These cost savings, in turn, have allowed us to reallocate resources to areas such as technology development, ensuring we’re well-positioned for the long-term and can continue to provide exceptional value to our customers,” said Gajendra Jangid, co-founder and chief marketing officer of Cars24.
During FY23, Cars24 also laid off 600 employees. However, according to Jangid, the firm has also done back to back hiring and its total employees count remained unchanged during FY23 and also in the current fiscal year.
- Cost of procurement
- Employee benefit expenses
- Advertising promotional expenses
- Information technology expenses
- Legal professional charges
Its rent, advertisement, information technology, legal, and professional fees are other prime costs which took the overall expenditure to Rs 6,058 crore in FY23 from Rs 6,256 crore in FY23. Head to TheKredible to see the detailed expense breakup.
Even though the revenue was flat, the company managed to control its overall cost which is evident from its bottom line that came down significantly by 57.2% to Rs 468 crore in FY23 from Rs 1,094 crore in FY22.
Caveat: We have ignored the other income of Rs 845 crore on Gain on disposal of intangible Assets while calculating losses for FY22. This was a technology transfer transaction with its Singapore holding firm.
|Expense/₹ of Op Revenue||₹1.22||₹1.09|
The company has a total current assets of Rs 1,659 crore till March 2023 which includes Rs 506 crore as cash and bank balances and an inventory of Rs 624 crore. Its ROCE and EBITDA margin improved by -18.75% and -5.04% during the preceding fiscal year. On a unit level, the company spent Rs 1.09 to earn a rupee of operating revenue.
Cars24’s holding firm is in Singapore which holds 12 subsidiaries across India, Australia, UAE, and Thailand. The company’s consolidated financial results may vary from Indian entity.
Cars24 is one of the most funded unicorns with over $1 billion in funding until its last round in December 2024 and was valued at $3.3 billion. Its closest rivals CarDekho and Spinny are yet to file their annual financial statements for FY23.
Looking at the improving financials, which have clearly come at the cost of growth, it’s clear that the focus is on survival, and a focus on profitable niches for now. That explains the financial push, to be followed no doubt by selling other services like insurance, other warranties and more. Since its last funding in 2021, the firm has tried to plough ahead on its own while cutting losses, but even considering the current reserves situation and improvement in metrics, a final visit to its investors might yet be needed in 2024.