What happened to Carvana?

The company’s stock has plummeted from its pandemic highs.

Singdhi Sokpo

A vending machine for cars is one of those crazy business ideas that sounds fake — until you spot one on the side of the highway.

Carvana has 34 vending machines across the US, and the glass structures can hold anywhere from ~20 to ~40 vehicles.

When in-person shopping slowed during the pandemic, Carvana’s online business boomed, pushing its stock from $29.35 in March 2020 to $360.98 in August 2021.

But what goes up, must come down

Just over a year later, Carvana’s stock is down 98% from its 2021 highs, and some analysts believe bankruptcy is inevitable.

What’s to blame?

  • First, the easing of covid restrictions has led consumers to shop in person again.
  • Second, despite used car prices falling, higher interest rates have made it harder to finance a car, draining demand.

As a result, Carvana’s vending machines aren’t churning through cars like they used to, and could end up being a monument to a future that was ahead of its time.

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