Deals round-up: GPEM moves into German auto sales

Granville Private Equity Managers (GPEM) has taken a minority stake in mobile.de, a German auto sales web site. The investment of Dm12.2 million will be used to finance a marketing campaign in a bid to strengthen the site’s position in the market.

The financing represents the first investment from GPEM’s new European fund, GPEM VI, which has approximately Dm300 million available to invest in German Mittelstand companies.

Mobile.de was founded in 1996 in Hamburg and claims to be the only large independent auto web site in Germany. The site advertises new and used vehicles and serves both private buyers and sellers and professional dealers. The site boasts 900,000 visitors per month and 7 million page impressions per month.

Mobile.de claims that one of its key attractions is the integrity of its content – cars are automatically removed from the site after four weeks, alleviating the frustrations associated with attempting to purchase vehicles already sold.