Sci & Tech

Iranian Car Buying Website Hires Inspectors

Auto and Tech Desk
A Tehran-based startup is trying to help you buy, sell and swap cars
Otex is one of a number of car sales websites, but with two unique offers.
Otex is one of a number of car sales websites, but with two unique offers.
The company claims its “killer feature” will take on the more established vehicle listing websites as the second-hand car market is often crowded by duds

As part of Avatech Accelerator’s fourth round of startups, one company is planning to sell cars via its website using at least two new novel methods.

A startup accelerator is a business center which hosts young businesses and is the mentor of company directors. In exchange for the mentorship the startups relinquish a portion of their ownership to the accelerator.

Second-hand car-buying in Iran is notoriously difficult, as are the driving conditions in the country, and thus the quality of the cars vary greatly from one region to another.

For example, a car originating in the northern Caspian Sea regions is more likely to suffer faster from rust and  humidity than vehicles in Tehran or the central provinces.

 Unique Offer

OTEX offers to list cars with the added advantage of having a vehicle inspector who will come and check your own vehicle if it is for sale.  

The company claims its “killer feature” will take on the more established vehicle listing websites as the second hand car market is often crowded with  duds.

They may be on to something here.

The company site says, “OTEX is an online platform to sell, purchase and also exchange cars. There is an innovative feature in OTEX that lets you hire a car professional inspector to check body and technical stuff of a car that you want to buy or even if it is your car.”

The startup founders, Azita Rezaei, who previously worked with online flight booking website Zoraq, and Behnam Salarinia, of digital payment system Fanap and job site ‘Persian Gig’ hope that their new site has got what it takes to reach critical mass.

Another unique offer, according to company, is that they will offer a “car swap service” where users of the website ask other users to swap their cars. Looking at some of the requests, however, one can see that some of the requests are far-fetched.

In one instance, a car owner with a Peugeot 206 with 40,000 km on the clock will hand over his car for a Mazda 3. In Iran a new Mazda3 is priced at double the value of the Peugeot.  

 Internet Statistics

OTEX is apparently in its infancy with the site reaching hardly 5,000 unique visits in the past few weeks according to the online analytical website SimilarWeb.

According to this site, OTEX reached 6,000 views in mid February, however views started to drop again in March.

In addition, visitors to the site are largely from Iran with the next biggest coming from the United Kingdom. This probably may be due to some confusion over the name.

In the UK, Otex is a medical drop for clearing out blocked ears.   

Meanwhile, other sites like, the market leader in this industry, had 2.4 million views in March. Compared to its peers, Bama retained its head start from inception in 2011 with a lead over its nearest rival, with just 11,700 views in the same month.

Sites like OTEX and Bama are likely to see a boost in the next few years as more foreign cars come to the market following investment and joint ventures by international carmakers including Renault, Peugeot and Citroen.

Add new comment

Read our comment policy before posting your viewpoints