Malaysian used car e-commerce platform Carsome is considering a public listing in the US and seeking a valuation of approximately US$2 billion (~RM8.3 billion), sources told Bloomberg.
According to them, the listing could happen through a merger with a SPAC (special purpose acquisition company) or traditional IPO (initial public offering). They also said that a deal to list Carsome could happen as soon as the end of this year, but noted that details of the listing could change.
The company is holding a pre-IPO funding round with the goal of raising roughly US$150 million (~RM620.9 million), the sources said. For more information on what an IPO or a SPAC is, you can consult this article.
If it achieves a US$2 billion valuation, Carsome could make history as Malaysia’s first unicorn, which is defined as a startup valued at over US$1 billion (~RM4.1 billion). Relatedly, Malaysia-born but now Singapore-based Grab is famously going public in the US via a SPAC deal worth US$39.6 billion (RM 163.7 billion).
Formed in 2015, Carsome claims to be the largest online used car trading platform in Southeast Asia, transacting over 40,000 cars per year. Aside from Malaysia, it also operates in Indonesia, Thailand, and Singapore.
Last month, it partnered up with Axiata Digital’s micro-financing provider, Aspirasi, to offer data-backed digital financing to used car dealers in Malaysia.