Meet Jeshua Choong, Founder and CEO of carching

Disruptr: Jeshua Choong, Founder and CEO of carching.

Share with us on what you do and what inspired you to start the business.

  • With a background in economics, I jumped straight into the finance industry and grew tired of the notion of money makes money after 7 years. I wanted to channel my time and energy towards something a bit more tangible, solving meaningful equations in society.
  • And the one thing that has been bothering me, and I’m sure I speak for the rest of us in Klang Valley, is traffic. I’ve always felt there’s so much more we can do with our time lost from commuting around town. On top of that, maintaining a car is not cheap, especially with depreciation and unexpected costs creeping in once every few years. There are options out there today in the gig economy where we can convert our vehicles into an active cash flow machine.
  • However, those require drivers to pick up strangers or parcels and incur that extra petrol burn plus additional wear and tear which weren’t part of their routine. Not everyone’s cup of tea.
  • These were the fundamental factors that drove me to find solutions that could solve these inefficiencies where we can turn KM into RM, seamlessly. At carching, we find creative ways to help you generate income passively with your car.

What has the journey been like?

  • It’s been nothing short of a roller coaster ride. Pushing boundaries is never an easy task, especially with the pushbacks you get – a typical case of inertia at rest. But once we managed to launch our beta up with 2 pilot tests, we’re starting to see a build up in momentum.
  • Within 8 weeks, we’ve gotten more than 1,000 downloads with 100 cars on the road carrying 7 different brands. Definitely, a fun and fulfilling journey with the team. And this is only the beginning!

Biggest achievement and what is one regret that you wish you had or had not done?

  • I’d pin it on building the right team that is as passionate as I am in what we do. I’m glad to have highly motivated colleagues beside me as we re-imagine what a car can do for you.
  • There are no regrets that I dwell upon, but if I were to name one, it would be not doing this a lot sooner. Those reading this that are above 30 could emphatise. There is no age limit when it comes to founding a company, but circumstances are not the same at different age group e.g. energy levels, commitments and ability to get friends to join the cause. I mean, nothing wrong with a Mazda crusing along LDP, though, having a 6.5 liter V-12 engine with 769 horse power on the Autobahn would be nice.

Where do you see yourself in the next 1 year?

  • We would be available nationwide within 12 months, with additional solutions that would make your time in traffic a little less painful and at the same time, provide more value to our clients who seek more effective exposure. Today, our users get to unlock up to RM300 per month with our pilots. Tomorrow, we aim to push that figure towards RM500 per month. In 1 year, RM700!

Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?

  • Apart from eating bakso in Jakarta or riding a tuk tuk in Bangkok, I’d probably be visiting the regional offices in those cities, making sure that operations are running fine. We can’t wait to bring carching to South East Asia and expanding our product offerings that would unlock more value to our users.
  • Building upon our location-based technology today and an accumulation of driving data across the years, we would laying down the foundations that will help us dive into deep technology within the automotive space.

What keeps you going to keep running the business?

  • Knowing that we’re onto something that provides a positive impact to the people around us keeps us going. We’ve injected RM40,000 back into our users’ pockets and we can’t wait to impact more lives!

What is one local startup you would like to work together with and why?

  • We are currently working with multiple local startups via partnerships e.g. car insurance, car service and repairs, car sharing and drive thru centers. As you can tell, they are all related to the automotive ecosystem where we are able to find synergies. So yeah, Grab, if you’re reading this, call us maybe?

Who is one founder (local or international) that you look up to?

  • I don’t have that one founder that I look up to or based my path on, more so a cocktail of founders (you know, the typical founders we millennials glorify) for their specific traits e.g. Jeff Bezos for his laser focus on customers, Steve Jobs for his obsession over user experience and branding, Travis Kalanik and Brian Chesky for unlocking the sharing economy, Elon Musk for his deep tech craze to solve monumental humanity issues. The list goes on and on!

Why should investors invest in your enterprise?

  • You know that saying about trees and planting it 20 years ago? The second best time is now. Like Google and Facebook, you see them as a giant search engine and social media platform but 70-95% of their revenue is derived from ads. It’s because of this comfortable cash flow that they are able to take on bigger things.
  • Similarly, our MVP focuses on drawing in advertisement and branding revenue first to keep the day-to-day operations rooted in solid foundations. Hence why we often emphasise that adtech is just the means to an end. Our true goal is to launch more mobility-based solutions that users can benefit from with an underlying ability to farm real live driving data across the region. And it won’t take you 20 years to get there!

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