IN A NUTSHELL
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 now has a presence in eight markets across Asia. With over 250 million listings, we are one of the world’s largest and fastest-growing marketplaces in Southeast Asia, Taiwan and Hong Kong, and are backed by Telenor Group, Rakuten Ventures, Sequoia India and Naspers. The Carousell marketplace has a diverse range of products across a variety of categories, including cars, lifestyle, gadgets and fashion accessories.
THE CAROUSELL JOURNEY
• Idea for Carousell was pitched at Startup Weekend Singapore 2012. Working demo was built in 54 hours – Carousell emerged as the overall winner.
• Was first rejected then finally awarded Venture Ideation Grant (after a literal elevator pitch) of SGD$7,000 by NUS Enterprise to develop the Carousell idea further.
• Fulll-time development of Carousell began out of Plug-in@Blk 71. Siu Rui dropped out of Honours year in university, Marcus left Oracle and Lucas began juggling school with full-time work. Days in the office started at 10.00am, and ended at 11.53pm to catch the last train back home. Work continued till 2.00am from home.
• Carousell iPhone app was launched in Singapore on 13 August 2012. It was ranked second on the list of Top Free Lifestyle Apps in Singapore on the third day of launch.
•Awarded ACE Start-ups Grant of SGD$50,000; Carousell Pte Ltd incorporated.
• Announced partnership with STClassifieds, Singapore’s leading online classifieds site, in a cross-posting collaboration to help Carousell users reach a larger pool of prospective buyers effortlessly. Carousell was picked for its convenience in creating listings and its foothold in the Singaporean youth community.
• Announced partnership with SPH Magazines that created Singapore’s largest community marketplace for women.
• Raised SGD$1M in seed funding from Rakuten, Golden Gate Ventures, 500 Startups, Danny Oei Wirianto and serial entrepreneur, Darius Cheung.
• Carousell marketplace hit 1 million listings.
• Carousell marketplace hit 5 million listings.
• Raised USD$6M in Series A funding led by Sequoia Capital. Investors that participated in this round included Rakuten Ventures, Golden Gate Ventures, 500 Startups and serial entrepreneur, Darius Cheung.
• Carousell landed officially in Taiwan on 4 December 2014; Malaysia on 9 December 2014; and Indonesia on 16 December 2014.
• Launch of Carousell’s web platform.
• Carousell marketplace hit 26 million listings.
• Launch of Carousell Groups.
• Carousell Hong Kong hits 1 million listings, celebrates official launch in Hong Kong.
• Carousell announces USD$35M in Series B funding led by Rakuten Ventures, together with Sequoia India, Golden Gate Ventures, and 500 Startups.
• Carousell Philippines hits over ½ million listings, celebrates official launch in Philippines.
• Carousell Australia hits over 1 million listings, celebrates official launch.
• Carousell Motors officially launches.
• Carousell Bumps and Coins launches in Singapore.
• Carousell Bumps and Coins launches in Hong Kong and Malaysia.
• Smart Listings launches.
• Carousell marketplace hits 100 million listings globally.
• Payments and Shipping features launches in Taiwan.
• Carousell Pro tool launches for property agents and employers listing on Carousell.
• Carousell Spotlight launches in Singapore.
• Carousell Spotlight launches in Hong Kong and Malaysia.
• Carousell announces USD$85M in Series C funding co-led by Rakuten Ventures and EDBI, with participation from existing investors, 500 Startups, Golden Gate Ventures and Sequoia India, as well as new investor, DBS.
• CarouPay launches in Singapore, Carousell’s first integrated payment system developed together with DBS, Stripe and Visa.
• Price Suggestions and Image Search launches in all markets.
• Carousell marketplace hits 196 million listings and 71 million items sold globally.
• Carousell announces US$56M investment from Naspers, through their classifieds arm, OLX Group. Carousell also acquires OLX Philippines as part of the deal.
• Carousell celebrates 7th anniversary and a milestone of 250 million listings.
• Carousell announces investment from Telenor Group and merges with 701Search entities – Mudah, Chot Tot and OneKyat.
Listing an item for sale on Carousell is super simple. Sellers need only to provide a listing photo, item title and price for their item to appear on the marketplace. If more info is needed, sellers also have the option to fill in further details such as an item description or a preferred meet-up location.
We now use artificial intelligence to speed up the listing process, by surfacing the relevant categories, titles and even the prices of similar items, when you list an item. These suggestions are achieved through the use of computer vision and machine learning from our large database of listings and transactions.
Carousell’s in-built private messaging system enables users to communicate entirely within the app, thus negating the need to exchange personal information such as phone numbers or email addresses, in order to complete a deal. The chat now comes with read receipts as well as online and typing indicators to help users close deals faster. We’ve also implemented contextual chat replies, where our AI can suggest chat replies based on the context of the conversation, such as when negotiating price, arranging a meetup or delivery.
Buyers and sellers can leave feedback on each other’s profiles after a transaction has been completed. This helps to build a secure and trusted community of users as both buyers and sellers can assess the credibility of the dealing party prior to entering a transaction. By striving to provide positive experiences for the users they interact with, buyers and sellers can build their credibility on Carousell over time.
Personalise your marketplace
Shoppers can shop only the items they want to see buy tapping ‘follow’ on their favourite sellers’ profiles. Users can also ‘like’ their favourite item listings to show their appreciation or to keep track of whether an item’s price has changed or if it has been sold.
A banner on the main ‘categories’ page offers users a more curated experience when they shop on Carousell. Collections are ever-changing and managed by the Carousell team to provide a themed shopping experience.
Carousell Groups connects users with similar interests, and puts all the related listings in one convenient place. Users can also participate in Discussions, a new feature on Carousell Groups where members can have conversations about their hobbies and favourite topics. Some examples of groups that are available now include Pokemon Go Gamers, Sneakerheads, Yoga Enthusiasts, and Canon Photography Enthusiasts.
Bump is a paid service that helps sellers make their listings more visible by ‘bumping’ their listings to the top of searches, three times over three days.
Spotlight is a promotion tool designed to increase the visibility of listings for sellers by pinning it at the top of the category, and in users’ relevant search and browse results.
Coins is Carousell’s in-app currency that can be used to access premium features like Bumps and Spotlight.