YourMech.com: connecting car owners and mechanics for discounted repairs - Technical.ly Philly

May 23, 2011 11:30 am

YourMech.com: connecting car owners and mechanics for discounted repairs

The car repair business needs disruption, says a Drexel University alumnus, and he has the platform to do it. YourMech.com, billed as ‘a car concierge service,’ connects car owners with vetted mechanics who handle minor repair jobs at up to a third cheaper than repair shops, says CEO Art Agrawal, a 2007 Drexel graduate now […]

The car repair business needs disruption, says a Drexel University alumnus, and he has the platform to do it.

YourMech.com, billed as ‘a car concierge service,’ connects car owners with vetted mechanics who handle minor repair jobs at up to a third cheaper than repair shops, says CEO Art Agrawal, a 2007 Drexel graduate now living in the Bay Area. The service is currently testing in Philadelphia, the first market for the early stage startup.

Users can get an instant quote and schedule an appointment online, where all the maintenance records are kept in the cloud, and a mobile mechanic can come to a person’s home or place of work for smaller jobs.

“Mechanics who work for repair shops make very little money, like $15 an hour on average. Consumers pay $60-$75 an hour to the repair shops,” says Agrawal, 28. “We are empowering these mechanics to work directly with the car owners and make twice as much money. Car owners can get an awesome and convenient service at [almost] 30 percent lower fees. Everyone wins.”

YourMech ensures the quality of mechanics and guarantees repairs, he said. Parts are sold at wholesale prices.

“Of course, there are jobs we cannot do on the curb side — welding, big engine job, transmission work — but we can do about 65 percent of all jobs,” he said.

On his team, Agrawal is joined by co-founder and CTO Dongyi Liao, 35, and Whitney Ortiz, 40, who handles operations and has been a car mechanic in Philadelphia for 15 years, he said.

Technically Philly readers can give it a try by using code “TechnicallyPhilly” to get 10 percent off.

YourMech.com is one of fewer than 60 startups currently in the Plug & Play Ventures accelerator program, which has three Bay Area locations, said Alireza Masrour, the incubator’s vice president of technology and investment who also serves as an adviser to the group.

Agrawal, who grew up in India, moved to the Bay Area after graduating from Drexel while working on another startup, Symbiosis. He met his co-founder Liao, an MIT grad who grew up in China, and was introduced to Ortiz by a mutual friend.

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YourMech plans to launch in the Bay Area next, he said.

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Christopher Wink

Christopher Wink is a Cofounder, Chief Executive Officer and Publisher of Technical.ly, the local technology news network. In that capacity, he is a co-organizer of Philly Tech Week, Baltimore Innovation Week, Delaware Innovation Week and other events that bring smart people together. Previously, Wink worked for a homeless advocacy nonprofit and was a freelance reporter for a variety of publications. He writes regularly about news innovation and best business practices on his personal blog here and curates a personal monthly newsletter of ideas and links here. The bicycle commuter loves cities, urban politics and squabbling about neighborhood boundaries.

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