Carousell merges with 701Search to form SE Asian classifieds giant
Classifieds service Carousell has signed an agreement with telecommunications firm Telenor Group in part to merge with 701Search, which owns online marketplaces Mudah in Malaysia, Cho Tot in Vietnam, and OneKyat in Myanmar.
Following the equity and cash agreement, Carousell will be valued at more than US$850 million with Telenor Group becoming the single largest minority shareholder in Carousell, owning 32 per cent of the combined company.
“This has been a significant year for Carousell, with the company achieving unprecedented results in market expansion and revenue growth,” said Carousell CFO Rakesh Malani. “We are driving rapid consolidation in the region with the OLX Philippines merger earlier in the year, and 701Search today. This transaction further cements Carousell as the leading online classifieds marketplace platform in Southeast Asia. With annualised revenues of over $40 million, a business of over 80 per cent gross margin and two profitable markets, we are very well positioned to advance our combined business to the next level.”
Following the merger, 701Search’s regional hub team that operates in Singapore will be fully integrated into Carousell, while Mudah, Cho Tot and OneKyat will retain their individual names and platforms, continuing operations in Malaysia, Vietnam and Myanmar respectively. The businesses will report to Carousell CEO Quek Siu Rui.
“Our mission has remained the same since day one. We want to inspire every person in the world to start selling and buying,” shared Carousell co-founder and CEO Quek Siu Rui. “Merging with 701Search will allow us to further this mission on an even greater scale and fortify our leadership in Southeast Asia as Mudah, Cho Tot and OneKyat are already leaders in their markets. I am excited to work with our new teammates to learn about the dynamics of these local markets, create win-win opportunities that are mutually beneficial for our community of users, and inspire even more people to start selling and buying.”