With ₹ 366 cr in Boot, CarTrade Zips Through Round-G Lap

On Growth Path

The Economic Times - - Disruption: Startups & Tech -

Supraja Srini­vasan & Biswarup Gooptu

Mum­bai | New Delhi: On­line au­to­mo­bile clas­si­fieds com­pany CarTrade has raised $55 mil­lion (about .₹ 366 crore) in a fresh round of fund­ing that has been co-led by ex­ist­ing backer Te­masek and a US-based fam­ily office.

Vi­nay Sanghi, founder of CarTrade, con­firmed to ET the clo­sure of the Se­ries-G round, but de­clined to name the new in­vestor, cit­ing con­fi­den­tial­ity clauses signed be­tween the parties.

Apart from Te­masek, the Sin­ga­pore gov­ern­ment’s in­vest­ment com­pany, CarTrade’s other in­vestors — the list in­cludes global pri­vate eq­uity gi­ant War­burg Pin­cus and US-based in­vest­ment firm March Cap­i­tal — did not par­tic­i­pate in the lat­est round. “They (War­burg Pin­cus and March Cap­i­tal) wanted to par­tic­i­pate, but given the (small) size of the round, we al­ready had tak­ers,” Sanghi told ET. Till date, the com­pany has raised about $230 mil­lion across mul­ti­ple rounds. The de­vel­op­ment also comes a lit­tle over a year af­ter the Mum­baibased com­pany closed one of the largest fund­ing deals in the coun­try’s on­line clas­si­fieds space, se­cur­ing $145 mil­lion in eq­uity fi­nanc­ing from Te­masek and March Cap­i­tal in Jan­uary 2016.

Pro­ceeds from that round, which was first re­ported by ET, were al­most com­pletely utilised to ac­qui-

ac­qui­si­tion of CarWale, com­bined en­tity works with 8,000 newand used-car deal­ers

Post CarTrade’s

re smaller ri­val CarWale from Ger­man me­dia con­glom­er­ate Axel Springer for about .₹ 590 crore. Fund­ing from the lat­est round, Sanghi said, would be used for ac­qui­si­tions and on new ini­tia­tives such as auto fi­nanc­ing.

“It could be any­thing — ven­tures of­fer­ing unique prod­ucts or tech­nolo­gies — that can add to the new and used car ecosys­tem, in­clud­ing car in­sur­ance, car ser­vic­ing, or even in newer tech­nolo­gies, such as the In­ter­net of Things,” Sanghi said, adding that the com­pany was open to mak­ing all-cash of­fers once again.

CarTrade launched auto fi­nance as a ser­vice in Oc­to­ber, in part­ner­ship with banks and non-banking fi­nance com­pa­nies (NBFC), to doc­u­ment and eval­u­ate used cars to en­able loans.

“Auto fi­nance will form 25% of our busi­ness by fis­cal 2018. This will have a huge ramp up on our fi­nances,” Sanghi said. While the coun­try’s on­line auto clas­si­fieds space has wit­nessed con­sol­i­da­tion over the past 24 months, it has also seen the en­try of new ven­tures oper­at­ing in the seg­ment, and these en­trants have raised sig­nif­i­cant fund­ing from risk cap­i­tal.

Droom has, till date, raised about $45 mil­lion in four rounds from a raft of in­vestors, in­clud­ing VC firms Light­box and Beenext, ecom­merce op­er­a­tor Beenos, Ja­pan’s Dig­i­tal Garage, Hong Kong-based in­vest­ment com­pany In­te­grated As­set Man­age­ment, and Axis Cap­i­tal.

The com­pany is also in talks with po­ten­tial in­vestors, with the twoyear-old ven­ture tar­get­ing $30-50 mil­lion in its next round of fund­ing, ex­pected to close over the next few months.

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