Carousell is a Singapore based e-commerce startup whose mission is to improve person to person sales of second-hand products. Their platform is available to consumers in the United States, Taiwan, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong.
Despite the highly competitive environment, Carousell has succeeded in carving out a niche for itself in the Southeast Asia startup world. In August 2016, it closed out a $35 million Series B funding round.
Carousell’s first product was a mobile app for people to sell used and unwanted items. It rapidly became more sophisticated expanding its reach to products previously in the hands of professional sales agents, such as real estate, cars, and employment.
Its latest offering is Carousell Pro, an innovative platform that will help to level the playing field for professional independent sellers. Carousell Pro will equip these sellers with the tools they need to analyze and manage their marketing efforts, thus enabling them to compete more successfully. An important aspect of the Carousell Pro platform is “Enhanced chat” which will put sellers in direct contact with potential buyers.
Carousell was born out of three youngsters’ need to simply get rid of the excess stuff in their lives. They were inspired to do so by developing an second-hand sales app because of their personal experience with online forums and classified listings. They found the resale of books, for instance, to be extremely cumbersome, and decided to take on the challenge and build it better. They sought to create a buyer and seller friendly platform that would make the whole sales process easier, more effective and more fun for everyone involved.
Co-founders Quek Siu Rui, Lucas Ngoo, and Marcus Tan were classmates and 2012 graduates of National University of Singapore.
Sui Rui, who is now the CEO of Carousell, credits their mid-college year in Silicon Valley California for being the spark that would ignite their transition to high-tech entrepreneurs. In Silicon Valley, they received on-the-ground training and inspiration from several Valley based startup founders. When they returned to Singapore, they began to develop their app, initially for their own private use. However, it wasn’t long before it began gaining attention. As Siu Rui puts it, they are “laser-focused on our mission of building a system to inspire everyone in the world to start selling.” And it definitely seems like they are on the right track.