Daily Markup #416: Carsome raises US$290M to invest internally & expand retail brand; BloomThis records 2x growth & over 1,000 jobs offered monthly; PolicyPal’s Val Yap highly commended by Imperial College London

Credit: Carsome

Revving it up

  • 500-backed used car marketplace Carsome announced it has raised US$290 million in a Series E round. It claims that this brings its total valuation to approximately US$1.7 billion.
  • The round was jointly led by Qatar Investment Authority, 65 Equity Partners (65EP), and Seatown Private Capital Master Fund (Seatown). According to DealStreetAsia, 65EP and Seatown are backed by Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings.
  • In its statement, Carsome said it plans to use the fresh funds to accelerate investment in people, product, technology, data capability, and infrastructure.
  • It also plans to expand its retail brand, Carsome Certified, across key markets in Malaysia, Indonesia, and Thailand.
  • Read the full statement from Carsome.

Credit: Business Today

A flourishing business

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  • 500-backed online flower gifting platform BloomThis achieved a significant milestone for its business last year.
  • Amid the pandemic and economic challenges it posed, the startup moved its operations into a 40,000 square feet warehouse.
  • Co-founder and CEO Giden Lim said, “The warehouse marks how far BloomThis has come as a business from where we first started.”
  • He added that the startup doubled its growth, expanded its team, and offered more than a thousand delivery and freelancer jobs every month.
  • Read the full article here.

Credit: Imperial College London

From strength to strength

  • Founder of 500-backed insurtech startup PolicyPal, Val Yap, was recently profiled by her alma mater, Imperial College London, after being highly commended in the university’s Alumni Entrepreneur Award 2022.
  • Val’s journey began with two major incidents within her family – her mother’s cancer diagnosis and her father’s passing. Sorting out their insurance policies was a struggle, and it was then that she had a vision to create an online platform to digitize the process.
  • The startup’s breakthrough came in 2016 when it was accepted into a Singapore government-sponsored framework that enables fintech startups to experiment with innovative financial products and services in a safe, live environment.  
  • After that, PolicyPal became the first digitized direct insurance broker in the country. In 2020, it was acquired by digital financial services platform AMTD Digital.
  • Read the full story here.

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