Home Estate Planning With failure came great success, says Carmoola founder and CEO

With failure came great success, says Carmoola founder and CEO

0 comment

Aidan Rushby can still remember the guilt he felt the day he told investors he was no longer in it for the long run.

Carefully drafting a letter to shareholders, he recalled telling himself: “You have to be honest.”

Now proud co-founder and chief executive of the used car finance mobile app, Carmoola, Rushby believes the seeds of his now successful business were laid in the failure of his first.

Rushby embarked on his first business journey in 2013 when he tapped into the consumer property space with a renter-focused mobile app, known at the time as Movebubble.

There was enough buzz to keep the business running as long as it did, he said, but the market he tapped into just wasn’t enough for “any meaningful revenue”.

After seven years of what felt like “pushing treacle up a hill,” he faced some tough questions – how was he going to tell everyone that he wanted out?

“I tried and tried and tried to get it to work,” he said.

The thought of failure, often considered an entrepreneur’s worst nightmare, can be one of the biggest barriers to success – and in this case, a damper on mental health, too.

“I realised that I wasn’t stupid, and I didn’t need to prove anything to these people anymore, and actually stopping and saying enough is enough, it doesn’t work, was the right thing to do,” Rushby said.

Giving up on this business wasn’t giving up on being an entrepreneur

Aidan Rushby

Never give up

He launched Carmoola in 2022 with the aim to make it easier for consumers to buy a car, with an easily accessible mobile platform that has now reached over 2 million loan applications in just two years.

The lightbulb moment? A bit of everything. Yet he specifically pointed out that connecting his thoughts on the online car retailers Cazoo and Carvana with the buy-now and pay-later platform Klarna was the moment he noticed a spark.

“I thought, wow there’s this huge opportunity here to put the two and two together and provide a consumer with cheaper, easier and faster car finance, and that’s exactly what I did,” Rushby said.

But Carmoola wasn’t the only business idea Rushby had after he left Movebubble behind – it was just the first to make it past the hundreds of rough drafts on his coffee table.

How did he know it was the one?

It ticked all the right boxes, he said, both personally and professionally.

Sort yourself first and the rest will follow

An entrepreneur often has more than one idea on their mind, but managing the creative as well as emotional workload can take a toll.

Once Rushby put a stop to making decisions out of fear, the results came flooding in – quite literally, as he remembered hearing the “ping, ping, ping, ping” gradually get louder from his Slack notifications in the pub with his teammates, just hours after launching.

“When you’re doing things out of fear, you make decisions out of fear and you make really bad decisions,” Rushby said.

“Whereas if you become much more comfortable with yourself and you really truly believe in yourself and you love yourself, your ability to be more conscious in how you think through the decisions that you’re making, it makes a huge difference.”

Members of Carmoola’s founding and current team: Igor Gordiichuk, Amy Rushby, Aidan Rushby, Danny Armstrong, and Roman Sumnikov

Rather than brushing off his mistakes in his first business, he used them to his advantage in the next. Even with a great team and a great product, if the market doesn’t fit, it won’t suffice, he said.

The order of importance? Yourself, the opportunity, and the “right” team. The money will follow with the rest, he said.

It’s not always a one-way street, though. An entrepreneur’s definition for “success” is rarely the same.

For Rushby? It’s making the world a better place for consumers.

“I think if you asked me maybe 10 years ago, I would have said something to do with being on a super yacht or something like that,” Rushby said.

Now? “It’s about the people… how many people are we impacting?” he continued.

Indeed, Carmoola has helped consumers finance nearly £50m worth of cars so far, with hopes to expand the “moola” brand even further in the future.

You may also like

Leave a Comment

Are you sure want to unlock this post?
Unlock left : 0
Are you sure want to cancel subscription?