Malaysia-Based Online Car Seller Carsome Secures US$200 Million in Latest Fundraising Round

Malaysia-Based Online Car Seller Carsome Secures US$200 Million in Latest Fundraising Round

This significant infusion of funds will propel the company’s profitable expansion.

Malaysia-based integrated car e-commerce platform Carsome Group Inc has successfully closed its latest fundraising round, boosting its liquidity position to approximately US$200 million. Existing investors such as 65 Equity Partners, Seatown Private Capital Master Fund, Qatar Investment Authority, Gobi Partners and Asia Partners participated in the funding round, alongside a new investor, EvolutionX Debt Capital, a growth-stage debt financing platform focusing on technology companies in Asia.

EvolutionX’s investment in Carsome marks its inaugural venture in Southeast Asia. Rahul Shah, Partner at EvolutionX, expressed the company’s dedication to supporting leading technology companies in Asia, especially those backed by reputable long-term investors. Shah shared that the company is excited about Carsome’s focus on achieving profitability and the belief that the collective capital raise will optimize the company’s capital structure and enhance its financial strength. This, in turn, will support Carsome’s journey toward sustainable and profitable growth.

“We are delighted to have our new investor EvolutionX joining us at this stage of our growth,” said Carsome’s Group President and CFO, Juliet Zhu. She further emphasized that profitability is just one milestone in Carsome’s long-term capital planning and that the company is committed to partnering with strategic investors who can provide value at different growth stages.

Carsome’s profitable expansion

Founded in February 2015, Carsome initially focused on facilitating comparisons of prices and features for new cars from different dealers. After receiving seed funding of US$350,000 in August 2015, the startup shifted its attention to cater to the needs of buyers and sellers in the used car market. The online platform strives to provide a comprehensive solution for car buyers, allowing them to conveniently compare, research and select favorable prices from certified dealers.

Carsome’s financial performance has been remarkable, with a 250% surge in revenue in 2022, reaching US$1.5 billion. The introduction of its regional retail line, Carsome Certified, contributed 35% of total revenue. In Q1 2023, the company achieved operational profitability for the first time, driven by ‌significant growth in trade margin. Notably, over 80 percent of the trade margin came from transaction margins, indicating the potential for additional revenue. Carsome now concentrates on expanding its offerings to include financing, insurance and after-sales services, further diversifying its income streams.

Carsome’s commitment to delivering exceptional after-sales services is exemplified in the rapid growth of its Carsome Service Centers (CSC). Since its launch at the end of last year, CSC has experienced consistent month-over-month growth of over 100%. The company has ambitious plans to achieve nationwide coverage in Malaysia by the end of Q3 2023. 

In addition to its strong after-sales offerings, Carsome has established itself as a digital powerhouse with the industry’s largest auto digital audience footprint. Boasting over 15 million monthly active users across its content and media ecosystem, including renowned brands like iCar Asia and Wapcar, Carsome has solidified its position as a trusted source of automotive information and services.

“We have spent the last eight years building a more trusted way for customers to transact within Southeast Asia’s used car industry. Our comfortable liquidity position and strong backing from

both existing and new investors place us on solid footing to deliver the world’s first

integrated car ownership ecosystem, going beyond just buying and selling cars to

include ancillary services across the whole ownership lifecycle,” remarked Carsome’s Co-Founder and CEO, Eric Cheng.

Leading the way in Southeast Asia

Carsome, spanning across Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Singapore, is on a mission to digitize the used car industry in the region. Its goal is to enhance the overall car buying and selling process and create a superior customer experience in Southeast Asia. 

Using an innovative online auction model, Carsome promptly lists consumer-submitted cars after a thorough inspection by their dedicated staff. Dealers have designated time slots to review the available vehicles, backed by Carsome’s commitment to quality through professional vehicle checkers. Buyers gain confidence, and sellers enjoy hassle-free transactions.

With a remarkable annual sales record of over 150,000 cars, Carsome has built a robust customer base of over 15 million unique individuals. These customers actively engage with Carsome through its comprehensive online and offline channels, solidifying the company’s position as a leader in the industry.

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