Carmudi, a car classified ads site backed by Rocket Internet, has raised $10 million to expand its operations in Asia. Investors include Tengelmann Ventures, the investment arm of the German retail giant. The site’s network currently operates in eleven countries, six of which are in Asia (Bangladesh, Indonesia, Myanmar, Pakistan, the Philippines, and Vietnam).
Carmudi, which launched last year, claims that the number of its listings is growing 200% a month and will soon reach a total of 100,000 around the world.
In Asia, Carmudi competes with local operators as well as Malaysia-based iCar Asia, which is backed by Australian sites Carsales.com. iCar Asia is currently the largest network of car classifieds sites in Southeast Asia, though its rapid expansion has come at a cost. BRW reported that in the fiscal year ending June 30, the company lost $2.78 million, far above its revenue of $551,000. Its CEO Damon Reilly said, however, that iCar Asia’s current focus is rapid expansion.
That is similar to Rocket Internet’s business strategy of launching in emerging markets, especially those with high mobile penetration, and growing as rapidly as possible with support from major investors like Tengelmann. This has the added benefit of allowing Rocket Internet’s portfolio companies, which include Easy Taxi and fashion retailer Zalora, to lay down groundwork for a logistics network that benefits all of the Berlin-based incubator’s properties.
In a statement, Carmudi co-founder and global managing director Stefan Haubold said, “The funding will help us drive our growth even further, enabling us to become the number one online vehicle marketplace in Asia. Eventually, I envision Carmudi to be a one-stop shop for all car-related topics, be it car reviews, news, tips or simple advice.”