Tempe startup Carvana is changing the way cars are sold

Carvana, a Tempe-based startup geared toward making used car sales as quick and easy as possible, opened its 13th coin-operated “car vending machine” in Cleveland, Ohio, a month after a facility opened in Tempe.

The new buildings advance the company’s mission to bring “the new way to buy a car to as many people as possible,” said Amy O’Hara, associate director of communications for Carvana.

“Even before launching our Tempe Car Vending Machine in June, the community responded favorably with a lot of anticipation and excitement,” O’Hara said. “The Tempe location has received positive feedback from the community, as well as continued interest from local news outlets.”

The Tempe Chamber of Commerce, of which Carvana is a member, was excited when Carvana first moved its headquarters there from Phoenix, said Anne Gill, IOM, president and CEO of the Tempe Chamber of Commerce.

“With more than 480 local employees, their focus on innovation and engaging corporate culture is transforming the car buying experience for consumers,” Gill said. “They, like many other high technology industry leaders, have seen the talented workforce and quality of life that Tempe has to offer.”

Touted as “the new way to buy a car,” Carvana has been steadily expanding its operations since its inception in 2013, and it now has 13 car vending machines across the country. Arizona remains the company’s preferred center of operations.

“Carvana’s co-founders grew up in Arizona and we’re proud to be an Arizona company,” O’Hara said. “Our hometown community has supported us from our beginning, from our startup phase, to growing into a new headquarters building in Tempe, to launching free, as-soon-as-next-day delivery in Tucson and Phoenix, to opening our first West Coast inspection center in Tolleson.”

The Greater Phoenix Chamber also celebrated Carvana opening its Tempe car vending machine and vehicle inspection facility in Tolleson, said Jennifer Mellor, vice president of economic development at GPC.

“It’s no surprise Carvana picked Tempe for their largest vending machine to date,” Mellor said. “Bringing this innovative approach to vehicle purchasing to the Valley demonstrates confidence in the Greater Phoenix region as a location to grow and thrive.”

The company grew rapidly in 2017, experiencing triple-digit, year-over-year growth with $859 million in revenue, according to public investor data. Carvana employs hundreds of Arizonans in Tempe, Tucson and Tolleson, and has “a number of open positions” in Arizona and nationwide, O’Hara said.

“Carvana is always looking for great talent,” O’Hara said. “Our mission is to change the way people buy cars, so we’re pretty focused on delivering on that mission right now.”

Carvana stock (CVNA) has multiplied in value by nearly three times in the past year, according to data from the New York Stock Exchange.

Customers can browse vehicles on Carvana.com, finance, purchase and schedule pick-up as soon as the next day — all in as little as 10 minutes.

“By shopping online, customers save valuable time and money, and whether you’re in Arizona or the numerous other markets we offer free delivery to across the U.S., we want to ensure you have an exceptional customer experience,” O’Hara said.

Graham Bosch

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