Former Tesla chief information officer (CIO) Jay Vijayan’s Automotive Retail Cloud technology venture Tekion, a cloud technology firm and provider of SaaS retail operating platform Automotive Retail Cloud, announced a Series C round of funding of $150 million at a $1 billion valuation on Wednesday. The funding round, led by private equity firm Advent International, included the participation of Exor (the holding company of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and Ferrari), Airbus Ventures and FM Capital (a fund that includes a large number of top 100 automobile dealers in the US as its limited partners). “We believe Tekion will be the trailblazer for enabling the modernisation of the entire consumer journey,” said Mr. Vijayan, CEO of Tekion.“Today’s consumers receive outstanding personalised retail experiences from companies like Amazon, Apple, Google, and Disney. Why shouldn’t they expect the same in their vehicle acquisition and service needs? We believe Tekion will be the trailblazer for enabling the modernisation of the entire consumer journey. It’s time to even the playing field for the automotive retail industry. Tekion’s Automotive Retail Cloud (ARC) provides seamless connectivity between vehicle manufacturers, dealers and car buyers, as per the company. It’s other key investors from the automotive industry include General Motors, BMW iVentures and Nissan-Renault-Mitsubishi Alliance Ventures. Earlier, the company had raised $65 million through Series A and Series B rounds.“We are fortunate and proud to be supported by great investors from the world’s top OEM brands, top dealers in the country, venture capital and private equity firms. We consider this as true validation of the value we are bringing to the industry,” Vijayan further said.Mr. Vijayan, who hails from Chennai, worked with Oracle and VMware before serving Elon Musk’s Tesla as the CIO between 2012 and 2016. He and his team built the entire digital and information technology systems ground-up at Tesla.