Published on August 10th, 2018 | by SayginYalcin


Consumers are fleeing classified websites to use “car buying experts”

UAE motorists turn to used car market as new sales hit speed bump

We think a lot about our cars in the UAE and have also spent a lot of time weighing up whether it makes more sense to rent, buy or take taxis.

As is the case in any maturing market, the recent years have seen the used-car industry outpace the more sluggish market for new cars.

The trend is outlined in a new report on the secondary car market shared exclusively with The National by, a website which provides services regarding car sales.

The report’s figures, based on a year-on-year comparison of data collected from sellers on why people have sold their cars over the past three years, provides a snapshot of an important part of the economy.

In 2018, close to 15 per cent of consumers sold their cars for financial reasons, a number that grew by 63 per cent from 2016. In the same period, the number of people who were planning to purchase another car after selling dropped by 18 per cent, while the people who mentioned leaving the country as a reason increased by 25 per cent in the same period.

“We see that there have been less transactions in the car market overall,” says Saygin Yalcin, the company’s founder and chief executive.

“We also believe that during the ‘good’ times people had more cars than necessary and are disposing them off currently – a number which has grown by 16 per cent since 2016.”

According to SellAnyCar, the most popular cars on the market are Japanese, which have a market share of 41 per cent, up 25 per cent since 2014. In response to tougher UAE regulations, 91 per cent of the cars on the road now have GCC specs, which has led to a significant drop in chassis problems.

Interestingly, while white cars account for about 20 per cent of all vehicles in other parts of the world, in the GCC they account for almost 35 per cent, followed by black and silver, the research found.

One development SellAnyCar’s research found was that the secondary car market has exploded in the UAE and shows no signs of stopping.

“That’s one major development and it’s nothing unexpected, this has to happen as a developed market,” says Mr Yalcin.

“This will happen. And within the next decade you are going to see that used-car business is going to be double or triple the new-car business.”

Consumers are fleeing classified websites and using “car buying experts” ( to sell their cars to increase their profit, maintain their privacy and save time, he says.

SellAnyCar reports that 95 per cent of its customers have gone to them first, with a success rate of 50 per cent.

Mr Yalcin says so far in 2018, his company has received bids worth USD 1.5 billion.

It is a steep growth from five years ago, when he launched the business after having a “broken experience” unloading his own car.

“I was trying to sell my car in Dubai and realised how difficult, lengthy and risky it was,” he says. “I was not an automotive expert, did not know much more than the make, model and year of my car, let alone anything about the required legal secondhand car selling process.”

Tips for selling a car in the UAE

  • Check’s online car valuation for a free estimate
  • Do not rely on online classifieds prices, as they are merely wishlists of other sellers
  • Selling to consumers will mostly require you to fix all damages your car might have. This might cost you a hefty repair bill.
  • Hiding damages of your car to a consumer, which endanger the roadworthiness, might leave you with warranty claims by the buyer 6 months down the road.
  • How will you get paid? Selling to a consumer bears the risk of not getting paid, receiving bouncing cheques or getting paid with fake cash.
  • Do not waste too much time trying to sell your car, while your car depreciates in value every day.
  • Do not pay to sell your car
  • Avoid risky test drives with strangers
  • Keep your privacy. Do not share your home address or personal phone number with random people.
  • If you have a car, which is older than 1 or 2 years, most dealers will not consider it worth their showroom real estate and reject.
  • Do not pay for a car inspection to evaluate your car
  • You do not have to promise to buy a car, in order to be able to sell your car.
  • You do not have to drive long distances or compare several dealers. is located nationwide, which saves you time and money.
  • Your car’s value does not depend on a dealer’s brand focus, inventory situation or perception of the market. Only a true marketplace based on demand and supply can determine your car’s real value. Use’s free and global car pricing mechanism.
  • Remember, your car might be worth more in a different country.
  • Make sure to check the dealer’s trade license, which should read “Used Car Trading”, nothing else.
  • Do not fall prey to fraudulent car buyers. Make sure you are dealing with “”, not anybody, which just sounds similar or claims same services.
  • Sign a binding, certified purchase agreement with the buyer, before transferring title ( has certified purchase agreements [“Mubaya”])
  • Do not accept cheques from strangers
  • Make sure the company you are dealing with is reputable and licensed appropriately.
  • If your car has an outstanding loan, make sure to request a liability letter from your bank.
  • After selling, make sure to remove your personal belongings, number plate and salik tag from your car.
  • After title transfer, ask for a copy of the new ownership certificate of your car, send it to your insurance company to receive a potential refund and notify them about the change in title.
  • If you are selling to a stranger or unknown dealer and are not sure, if you will get paid, use an escrow payment service, which will cost you a significant amount of money.
  • All in all, selling privately might leave you with less cash in your hands due to loss in time (and hence car depreciation) and transaction costs, including costs of reducing risk and process education.

Source:, The National


Business Extra podcast’s Saygin Yalcin on being a leading entrepreneur. Listen here

Tags: , , , , , , ,

About the Author

Saygin is the Founder & CEO of the Middle East's (ME) first & largest car buying service, and Founder of the first & largest online private shopping club in the ME,, which has been acquired by, making him Partner at the and Jabbar Internet Group, becoming the largest ecommerce company in the Arab world, with 3000+ employees. In its largest acquisition outside the US to date, has acquired Group. He has been selected as a UBS Industry Leader, a network of Ultra-High-Net-Worth Individuals. He was also Advisory Board Member & Academic Lecturer of Entrepreneurship at the Canadian University of Dubai. He was referred to as "the region's online business guru" by the National newspaper in the UAE, while Arabian Business named him as "one of the region's finest young entrepreneurs and a major part of the entrepreneurial scene in recent years". Fortune magazine (mag) named him in the 40 under 40 list, as one of the most influential young people in business, Entrepreneur mag ME awarded, with Saygin at its helm, as the "Fastest Growing Company in the ME", while the National newspaper sees it among a handful of tech companies to "have the potential to break the $1bn barrier". In a cover story, Entrepreneur mag ME titled him as "undoubtedly one of the youngest & most successful internet entrepreneurs in the ME”, awarded as "Technology Innovator of the Year”, while Khaleej Times awarded him as the Technology Leader. Gulf Business selected him as 1 of the Top 10 Entrepreneurs in ME. In a cover story, Arabian Business counts him as 1 of the most successful entrepreneurs to call Dubai home. During the World Government Summit, HH Sheikh Saif Bin Zayed, Minister of Interior of the UAE, presented Saygin as an inspiring story for the country, in the presence of world leaders, incl. HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

Leave a Reply

Back to Top ↑

  • Recent Posts

  • Categories

  • Archives