Online auto-parts market raises $30 million, from Crain’s Chicago Business.
A company that has quietly created a billion-dollar online market for body shops and parts providers has attracted a $30 million investment.
PartsTrader, which launched in Chicago in 2012, has built a platform that includes 8,000 repair shops and a similar number of suppliers—from automakers to recyclers such as LKQ. The company has 175 employees, including 70 in Chicago, where it has doubled headcount in the past year as its network expanded from five states to 48. Hiring has slowed, but the company still is adding software developers and other workers.
It works like this: Body shops go online to search for repair parts from suppliers such as Chicago-based LKQ, most of whom they already use.
“Instead of making four to seven phone calls, they can do it in one place online,” said Dale Sailer, vice president of business development.