BodyShopBids, an online and mobile service that lets consumers solicit auto repair estimates by uploading a photo, has secured $1 million in “Series A” financing led by OCA Ventures. New World Ventures and Lightbank also participated in the round. Jim Dugan, managing partner of OCA Ventures, and Jeff Maters, vice president of New World Ventures, will join BodyShopBids’ board of directors. This comes as BodyShopBids is prepared to roll out its website and mobile app to car owners in major cities around the United States, starting with Los Angeles. The company had been doing business only in the Chicago market.
BodyShopBids launched in June 2011 and announced $250,000 in seed funding from investment firm Lightbank in September. As of early January 2012, the company had partnered with 275 Chicago-area body shops and processed more than $2.5 million in damage estimates. It’s worth noting that Lightbank, one of BodyShopBids’ backers, is a venture capital firm started by the founders of Groupon.