Instant Reg Check: Reece McDonald

Instant Reg Check offers customers a simple and quick way to check the records of new or used cars online

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Name of founder: Reece McDonald

Age of the founder: 25

Location: Leeds

Date launched: 01/01/2021

Number of employees: 3


Which university, if any, did you attend? N/A – didn’t attend university.

Reece McDonald had been interested in cars from a young age. But when the time came to buy a used car, McDonald wasn’t impressed by the information provided from a car checking service. This experience, along with a background in software development, led McDonald to launch Instant Reg Check – read on to learn more…

What does your business do?

My company Instant Reg Check provides important information to anyone looking to purchase either a new or used car. With the service, people can check if a vehicle has been written-off, stolen, has outstanding finance, and much more.

All of this information is provided to our customers for a low fee to use alongside their own due diligence to help them buy with confidence. We’re really focused on helping potential car buyers to make an informed decision when buying a car.

Where did the idea for your business come from?

From a young age, I have always been interested in cars, and for some time I was looking to get into the car industry. When looking to buy a used car myself, I used one of the existing car check services and I was disappointed by the report provided.

With my background in software development, I could clearly see how I could improve upon the existing services. I have also previously been stung by buying a car that was mis-sold, so I wanted to help others avoid this too!

How did you know there was a market for it?

I took the time to review the market and I found that the data which the existing companies provided was not sufficient. Additionally, their sites were overly complex when it came to purchasing, as well as displaying, report data.

I knew we could come in and make a site that was user-friendly, with a simple checkout flow, as well as displaying the important information to the user quickly and easily.

Plus, the pandemic has pushed a lot of car sales online, so the need to fully assess a vehicle via an online service has increased.

What were you doing before launching your business?

We have several software businesses, so mainly working on those and maintaining them for the current users we have on those platforms. Also, mainly developing systems internally to aid with managing the software businesses that we have.

Have you always dreamed of starting a business?

It has always been a big goal for me to have a successful business, one that I enjoy working on and is a real passion project. I think my entrepreneurial mindset has always pushed me towards owning/starting not just a single business, but building up multiple successful businesses.

How did you finance your business?

The business was financed through our other software companies, which meant that we didn’t have to worry about external financing and the company is all self-contained.

Explain your business model and how you make money.

Our business model is mainly B2C, with a look to getting into the B2B market at some point in the near future.

We provide a report on a vehicle registration, which is provided by the customer. We offer three tiers of vehicle checks: Basic, Silver and Gold. Each of these contain different levels of information, such as outstanding finance, written off, and much more.

Customers pay a one-time payment to access this information, which is provided instantly after completing their purchase, as well as sent to them via email.

What are the main challenges you have faced? And how did you overcome them?

As a new entrant to an already established market, we struggled at first to come up with an identity and a unique approach to really stand out from the crowd.

From the research we performed on our competitors, we found that our system needed to be simple to use, and the report provided must show any issues with the vehicle to the user straight away. This way, we know that the user gets the information they need as fast as possible.

What has your experience been of starting a business during a pandemic?

We have found it positive overall, due to the fact that our business is fully online so we don’t have any issues with suppliers or waiting for stock importing.

Additionally, many people are purchasing vehicles online and aren’t able to view them in person. Therefore, having access to a vehicle’s full history online has been a great help for many people during the current pandemic.

Describe your first breakthrough.

We launched in January this year and immediately saw that we had made the right decision. We found a lot of people were extremely grateful for our platform, and we have received a lot of praise for how simple and intuitive our platform is.

How has Brexit impacted your business? Do you think it will in the future?

At the moment, we haven’t seen any impact with Brexit, and we don’t really anticipate there being any issues or impact on our business in the future due to Brexit.

What advice would you give to other aspiring business owners?

If you have an idea and it’s something you’re passionate about, then follow it. I strongly believe in doing something you love, as when you achieve this you will never feel as though you are working a day in your life. The best thing to do in life is try, and whether you succeed or fail, you will have had fun putting time into something that you are passionate about!

What is one resolution you have for your business this year?

Our main goal is to grow our B2B side of the business, as well as further refining our system to be more user-friendly over the next 12 months.

How do you see your business developing in the next three years?

In the next three years, we would like to be a household name competing against the leaders in the industry, ideally with a split between B2C and B2B.

We would also like to look into other vehicle-related business that we could offer as well as our core service.

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Written by:
Scarlett writes for the energy and HR sections of the site, as well as managing the Just Started profiles. Scarlett is passionate about championing equality and sustainability in business.
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