Founded almost a year ago in the midst of the first Covid-19 lockdown, Any Colour Car has gone from strength to strength since its formation. We decided to interview Managing Director Jonathan Seaman to get the inside scoop on how Any Colour Car came about and what the future holds for the company.
What did you do before Any Colour Car?
I have worked within the Toyota network where I really learned the job from valeting cars all the way to looking after 2 dealerships. I have also been lucky enough to be a Used Car Director for the second largest Toyota Dealer group in the country. However, from 2000 to 2018 I was also very lucky to be part of the founding team of The Car People. At TCP (as we referred to it), we built an amazing brand and reputation on the back of our ethos and strapline “the hassle-free way to buy a car”. We opened our Wakefield business in October 2000 with a team less than 30. When the business was sold in 2018, we had a team of over 500, 3,500 cars for sale, 4 huge car supermarkets, a transactional telesales department, industry-leading training and over 25,000 used car sales per year. We had incredible belief in our proposition around choice, value and service. We focussed more on customer service (especially when we got it wrong) than we did on sales and profit. We didn't slap each other on the back too much for selling lots of cars, we expected the results to come if we did the basics right. I was super proud of TCP, (as you may have guessed) and the facilities, services and standards. When the company was sold, I knew that the first thing to change would be the brand. That’s why I decided, with a heavy heart to leave my long-time colleagues and friends and move on to new pastures.
What made you decide to start Any Colour Car?
By accident! I created Bluesky Automotive Services to help dealers to evolve their used car proposition based on procurement, data analysis, merchandising, recruitment, training and digital sales. However, I quickly realised 2 things. The first thing that I noticed was that there was a gap between what a dealer would pay for a car they wanted and what a customer was happy with. This gap was caused by most of the cars going through auctions which attract hefty buyer fees. The second thing was that I really, really enjoyed being hands on and dealing with customers again. It was from here that Any Colour Car was born: a car buying solution, with a simple vision - to take the hassle out of selling your car.
What do you think makes Any Colour Car stand out from other car buying services?
We simply place cars with dealers that we know want them. That may sound obvious, but for a customer to get the price that they want, we need to find the best buyer and that is what we do. Many car buying services are also renowned for reducing the price when they see the car. We try not to do this. We expect a used car to be used and as long as there is nothing significant, we don’t reduce the price.
What is the biggest achievement so far of Any Colour Car?
Our biggest achievement is coming very soon. We are currently in the process of purchasing a garage in Barnsley, which will give us great facilities to help customers out face-to-face. However, the best thing about our new premises is that we will be able to achieve even better prices by putting faults and damage right before we sell the cars on. This means that our customers will achieve a better price and the dealers will receive their cars almost ready to hit display.
How do you see Any Colour Car developing in the future?
We are already partners with a tech company who specialise in sourcing funding and vehicles for customers. We hope to develop this relationship further and to have a real unique feature, buying cars from customers, making them “ready for retail” and selling them to dealers.
What do you get up to when you’re not working?
I spend the majority of my free time with my family. I have been married for 9 years and have two wonderful daughters, Jasmine, 7 and Jemima, 5. We love doing things together. I work a lot as it’s a new business and Jemima has already decided she will be the future boss of anycolourcar.com. It’s great for the kids to be interested and involved in running a business from such a young age. When I’m not working, I love cycling. My goal currently is to get the girls interested in cycling too, so that we can enjoy it together. If you’re looking to sell your vehicle, get a no-obligation quote today from Any Colour Car and sell your car without the hassle.