Startup based in Fayetteville ObiiGo recently added a feature to its app that allows users to buy now and pay later for car maintenance and repairs.
Klarna payment option has been integrated into the app so users can set up payment plans for work. At the beginning of 2021, ObiiGo launched the first application allowing users to receive job offers from independent car workshops.
John Harmon, Founder and CEO of ObiiGo, said it was the first app of its kind to use the Klarna platform. He expects this to be a game-changer for the app, and it’s already having an impact. In the second week since adding Klarna, he said ObiiGo did the same volume of business as it did in two months.
He said Klarna does not charge interest and users do not need credit to qualify. However, those who do not pay on time will be charged a late fee. Still, he said users can opt for payment extensions.
ObiiGo has participating auto shops in Northwest Arkansas, Houston and Phoenix and recently expanded to include shops in Austin, Texas and Michigan.
Kent Atkins, owner of The Grease Pig Lube & Tune, said the app has better connected the company to students and young customers. The app also allows mechanics at its two Fayetteville locations to fill slots if they have free time. And, he said, the “buy now, pay later” feature solves an affordability problem that independent stores have faced for years.
Atkins said he became intrigued when he learned that Harmon was working on an OBD II (on-board diagnostic) device that the service center advisory board for Bumper to Bumper and Auto Value was looking to develop several years ago. when Atkins served there.
Harmon said ObiiGo worked with the University of Arkansas on a device, but chip shortages affected its release. He expects it to be available in early 2023. His goal is to have the device in every US vehicle.
ObiiGo has a team of 12 people.