Car buyers employ boffins to create formula for success.

In an industry first, the UK’s largest second hand car buyers has partnered with experts from The University of Manchester to calculate a formula for pricing that will improve the accuracy of their online valuation as part of their fast, safe, fair promise to customers. commissioned two doctors of Applied Mathematics to work on a new formula designed to improve the pricing structure for the thousands of car valuations that the business deals with every week.

The long-term brief, which will form part of a university PHD course, is to develop a new pricing model that can cope with the huge fluctuations in the market, such as oil prices and seasonal trends in the car buyer’s market.

The formula will mean that the valuation given online will be able to incorporate many more variables in current market factors, so that sellers get a more accurate valuation ahead of an inspection at one of their UK branches.

Dr Geoff Evatt (Oxford) and Dr Paul Johnson at the School of Mathematics at The University of Manchester have previously worked on optimal pricing structures for leading travel firms and they have developed pricing software for the mining industry.

On beginning their work the two doctors spent four days occupying an office at headquarters in Manchester, with staff commenting that their wall-spanning equations were reminiscent of ‘A Beautiful Mind’.

Paul Coulter of comments: “Offering customers a service that is fast, safe and fair is at the heart of our business strategy. Previously, our online valuation system hasn’t been able to factor in some of the massive changes in external market conditions – we’ve commissioned The University of Manchester to help us to offer people who choose to sell to us, a better, fairer service.”

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