Shift, an automotive ecommerce retailer, has expanded its operations into Portland, Ore., and Sacramento, Calif., where consumers can now access its car-buying and car-selling services.
The move into Oregon, specifically, will utilize Shift’s ongoing partnership with Lithia Motors, a publicly traded dealership group in Medford, Ore.
Shift now has nine operational markets, as Portland and Sacramento join the seven existing markets, all of which are in California: San Jose, San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles, Riverside, Orange County and Oakland.
“Consumers in these areas, as with our existing markets in California, desire the convenience of shopping at home and having the concierge come to them on their schedule,” Shift co-chief executive officer Toby Russell said in a news release. “Shift is uniquely poised to bring the car-buying and -selling experience to them.”
Shift has taken a cautious, steady approach to geographic expansion.
In a phone interview earlier this month for a different story, Russell said of expansion, “What we want to be careful about and thoughtful about is, we saw Beepi go really fast and really furious. And they got themselves in trouble. They got themselves over their skis and they blew up.”
Shift is “very conscious” about the used-car market being a regional market, as opposed to a national market, he said.
“And so, we’re looking at the U.S. and piecing together region by region, where we want to create density of supply, so that … our users can shop more cars on Shift.com than they can with anybody else,” Russell said during the April 4 interview, referring to the expansion strategy in general, not specifically the Portland and Sacramento moves (which were not mentioned). “And the idea is to be able to steadily grow that out to where we can have high density in each region that we touch and stack on one region after another.”
Shift said it sold 8,500 used vehicles last year, up 70% year-over-year. It anticipates 13,000 to 15,000 used-car sales this year and believes revenue will climb between 60% and 75%.