“Pascal is an enthusiastic car mechanic,” says Joshua Worger about his co-founder Pascal Walter. “In his spare time, he tinkers with his car, makes repairs, puts in spare parts.” Two years ago, when they took a ride together in the FlixBus, Pascal told them about his hobby, his passion. And also about the problems that screwdrivers have: Repair instructions are available either as a book and only with a lot of luck, suitable for your own vehicle, or in Internet forums and YouTube videos – including the danger of making your beloved car even more in need of repair with the half knowledge provided.
Joshua quickly recognizes the central challenge for the scene: There is no offer that covers the needs of car hobbyists quickly and reliably. When Pascal tells the FlixBus about how much he would like to establish a platform for the screwdrivers, Joshua is nevertheless sceptical at first: “I thought it was about 10,000 people or so. Pascal teaches him better – millions of people spend their free time working on their favourite thing: the car. “I already found the subject interesting,” laughs Joshua. They also discovered a second Pain Point: Ordering the right spare parts is often very difficult in common online shops for automotive spare parts. At Clonck, these problems are solved by making it easier than ever for customers to buy spare parts. In the Clonck app, the user selects the part he wants to repair/replace based on a graphic of his vehicle and is immediately shown the matching spare part, which he can then order directly in the app. The customer who orders from Clonck does not need any specialist knowledge to order the right spare part.
Clonck is the salvation of the hobby screwdriver
And a business model has already been born: together with Christian Reimann, Worger and Walter are founding a start-up that is intended to meet the needs of the screwdriver community: online, uncomplicated, fast and reliable. Today Clonck is about to enter the market. Hobbyists can use the Clonck app to call up a model of their vehicle and select exactly which spare part they need. In the long term, the car should even be available as a 3D model – making it even easier for customers to find their way around.
There are cooperations with various parts dealers. The user can choose between original parts and accessories within the Clonck App. Once the decision – which part he wants to buy – has been made, the user is redirected to the partner’s website. They are guaranteed to receive the right part – exactly right for their vehicle. This is done by decoding the chassis number (FIN). The partnership is currently running as an affiliate solution, in early summer Clonck wants to have developed into a marketplace and process the purchase directly. The team also offers original repair manuals. This provides the screwdriver with comprehensive and guaranteed reliable help. “In the long term, we want to build up a community so that users can exchange information,” says Worger. “We want to make it possible for people to carry out all the usual repair work on their car themselves, without the need for an expensive workshop”.
Why not found one yourself?
For Worger the start-up is not the first foundation. After a number of positions in sales, he worked at Invest in Bavaria until 2017, where he first got to know the start-up scene. “At some point I thought to myself: It is of course fun to support the entrepreneurs – but maybe it is even more fun to found your own company. And so one thing led to another,” explains Worger. In 2017, he will launch 18points, a law app for law students.
Flight support as a jump start
At that time, he secured an Exist Founders Scholarship. He wants to repeat this with Clonck if possible – and is rejected. “Of course this made us all very sad,” says Worger. But for a long time he has no reason to mope. Because an alternative quickly presents itself: The Flügge grant, the Bavarian subsidy program to support an easier transition to a start-up existence. “We revised and compressed our Exist applications once again and then applied,” says Worger. This time, the funding is working. Via Flügge, Worger and his team each receive a monthly “salary” of 2,500 euros over
a scholarship, and certain material expenses are also financed.
“We would have pushed our idea even without the funding,” says the Clonck founder. “But Flügge makes it possible for all team members to work full-time on our project, that we can always use all available skills, that’s a great help.”