How a former professional race car driver and his team are transforming the future of mobility
Meet Sterling Pratz, the Founder and CEO of Car IQ, focused on creating the first vehicle-initiated commerce platform. Sterling founded Car IQ after recognizing a shortfall within the automotive payments space, specifically that banks had no way to verify a vehicle without human interaction limiting direct connections to banking payment platforms and increasing the risk of fraud. He has more than 25 years of automotive experience in technology.
We sat down with him for a cup of coffee to talk about the future of mobility, innovation, and his dream car.
We believe the future of banking is machine commerce and cars are just the beginning. When vehicles pay for their own services, they eliminate fraud risk, add transparency to the transaction and greatly streamline operations for fleet managers.
Sterling Pratz, Founder and CEO, Car IQ
Today, there are millions of IoT machines, specifically cars coming on-line and needing/requesting services. With that many vehicles I felt the next natural step was to enable them to pay for those services themselves. Our team’s mission is to create the first true automotive grade payment solution that allows cars to procure and pay for services autonomously. A chief concern we heard talking to people within the auto and finance industries is that banks do not currently have a way to verify a vehicle, and therefor do not trust them to pay for services without a human connection. We wanted to create that trust between the bank and the vehicle.
We leverage the complex sensor data present in every car to create a verifiable identity platform for vehicles that compliments todays “KYC” method with “KYM”™ Know Your Machine method. KYM™ is a proprietary identity verification technology we have developed that enables vehicles and machines to autonomously validate their needs and status, authorize payment requests and then re-validate the services performed. This removes credit cards in vehicle service and payment workflow and eliminates fraud as well as the need for human involvement in the process. Car IQ makes it possible for vehicles to connect directly to and pay and/or transact with banks payment networks or really any payment partner.
Beyond vehicles making payments, Car IQ will enable new services such as stored values and vehicle wallets that include stored values tied directly to the vehicle to support payment and lending platforms. When vehicles are trusted the risk of fraud is eliminated, and transparency is added to the transaction. We believe the future of banking is machine commerce and cars are just the beginning.
I couldn’t ask for a better team. Car IQ is made up of seasoned professionals with experience in automotive software and hardware technology, payments, SaaS data systems, and big data analytics.
Partnering with Avanta Ventures will allow us to execute our vision even more rapidly as we grow our team, scale our operations, and focus our efforts on creating that trust in vehicles and developing a vehicle-initiated commerce platform that connects cars and services providers directly to payment platforms.
I’m a former professional race car driver, so I’d have to go with something fast. A Porsche GT2 RS or a non-wing Sprint Car.