Singapore, 1 July 2021 — Carousell, one of the world’s largest and fastest growing classifieds, today celebrated its First Caroupreneur Awards held in its new global headquarters at GSK House Asia in Singapore. The First Caroupreneur Awards recognises a wide variety of outstanding achievements of Singaporeans over the past challenging year, ranging from entrepreneurs who started or scaled their businesses online, to brick-and-mortar SMEs who digitialised their businesses, and everyday Singaporeans who gave away good quality preloved items for free.
Celebrating the First Caroupreneur Awards, Minister of State for Trade and Industry, Mr Alvin Tan graced the event as its Guest-of-Honour.
The judging panel, made up of Quek Siu Rui, CEO and Co-founder of Carousell, Ng Chee Soon, Managing Director of Carousell Singapore and Lawrence Ngan, Deputy Centre Director of Heartland Enterprise Centre Singapore, assessed shortlisted sellers identified from their performance from 1 January to 31 December 2020 together with a mix of qualitative and quantitative criteria, such as quality of listings, reviews, creativity and brand story.
One winner was selected for each of the 12 categories that celebrate the wide variety of sellers on Carousell. The 12 categories are: Heroes of Free, Caroupreneur Merchant of the Year 2020, Best SME Digitalisation, Best New CarouBiz Booster Package Merchant, Best in Carousell – Autos (Used Cars), Autos Workshop and Services, Property, Home Services, Men’s Fashion, Women’s Fashion, Electronics, and Lifestyle Products & Accessories.
Member of the judging committee and Managing Director, Carousell Singapore Ng Chee Soon said, “Carousell is a product of entrepreneurship itself, the co-founders relentlessly pursued their mission of creating an app that would inspire the world to sell and buy. It is extremely heartening that Carousell is full-circle in nurturing entrepreneurship by giving anyone the ability to easily act on their own entrepreneurial curiosity with just the snap of a photo.”
He continued, “since the pandemic started, we have been working very closely with Enterprise Singapore to launch the CarouBiz Booster Package, an initiative developed to support the digitalisation of micro-enterprises, SMEs, entrepreneurs and heartland merchants, many of whom use Carousell as a supplement to their income, or even as their primary income source. These awards celebrate the outstanding achievements and diversity of our Carousell users and the lives that have transformed over the past challenging year. These success stories are a testament to just how much potential there is for online commerce, and we hope to stoke this fire and continue the momentum in Singapore.”
Award winners come from all walks of life, from full-time business owners to part-time sellers, each using Carousell in varying capacities. Winner of ‘Best in Carousell – Lifestyle Products and Accessories’, Christina Heng was an ex-financial auditor who quit her job to pursue her dream of running a party e-commerce business, but soon after became pregnant and found herself juggling new responsibilities. Years later, with her kids having grown a little, she found it was easiest to start and operate her store on Carousell with the little time she had.
Christina said, “I have always been selling many of my preloved items on Carousell. It is very concentrated in Singapore and the platform is the easiest to test the market and start selling. During the early circuit breaker period, I decided to try out starting the store on Carousell. As a Mom, I intuitively understood how parents needed activities to keep their kids busy while spending more time at home, and took the opportunity to recommend and share items with all the parents who reached out to us on Carousell. Since then, our business has grown about 250% over the past year, but what I am most proud of is being able to start a business revolving around a topic I love, from the comfort of our own home, while still being able to arrange my schedule to care for our kids full time, as well as the joy that we bring to many kids with our custom gifts and party goodie bags.”
Winner of Best SME Digitalistion Vincent Lee and his wife opened Kai Joo Departmental & Optical (@kaijootp) as a small showcase unit at Tanjong Pagar selling watches and providing other watch-related services, in 1980. 40 years later, the pandemic resulted in Singapore only allowing essential services to remain open. 65-year-old Mr Lee could only operate his optometry and key making services, and his once bustling shop only saw less than 10 customers a week. His son-in-law, Neo Wen Hao, suggested selling online and signed up for a Carousell account in May 2020.
“Carousell is a good platform to start an online business as it is easy to use (for both sellers and buyers), and does not charge any commission fee. However, as a 65-year-old, Mr Lee was not familiar with e-commerce nor IT savvy. So in September, I decided to make a career switch and take over the online platform so that my parents-in-law can focus on the retail store, and relieve their stress of trying to adapt to technology. When I started helping out with the business, I chanced upon the CarouBiz Booster Package and saw that 90% of the package is being subsidised by the government. Carousell has been a huge part of our digitalisation process by allowing us to position ourselves in the digital market with minimal effort,” shared Wen Hao.
For the full list of winners, please visit here.
Carousell is a classifieds marketplace that makes selling as easy as taking a photo, buying as simple as chatting. Launched in August 2012, Carousell began in Singapore and is now one of the world’s largest and fastest growing marketplaces in eight markets across Southeast Asia, Taiwan and Hong Kong. Carousell is backed by leading investors, including Telenor Group, Rakuten Ventures, Naver, and Sequoia Capital India. Carousell has a diverse range of products in over 30 categories, including property, autos, electronics, home and furniture, and fashion. Download the app for iOS or Android, and visit http://www.carousell.com for more information.
ANNEX – LIST OF WINNERS
|1||Caroupreneur Merchant of the Year 2020||@mybrogarage|
|2||Best SME Digitalisation||@kaijootp|
|3||Best New CarouBiz Booster Package Merchantfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|4||Heroes of Free||@carmenloveee|
|5||Best in Carousell – Autos (Used Cars)||@mybrogarage|
|6||Best in Carousell – Autos Workshops and Services||@carstomsg|
|7||Best in Carousell – Property||@leecheekhiang|
|8||Best in Carousell – Home Services||@aplusplumbing|
|9||Best in Carousell – Men’s Fashion||@kiatking|
|10||Best in Carousell – Women’s Fashionemail@example.com|
|11||Best in Carousell – Electronics||@techbytesg|
|12||Best in Carousell – Lifestyle Products and Accessories||@bash_partystore|