Zopim, JobsCentral co-founders join Singaporean automotive platform Motorist’s seed round


Motoris Management

Motorist, a Singapore-based automotive platform, has raised SGD1.2 million (US$900,000) in seed funding from an AngelCentral syndicate led by Lim Der Shing, co-founder of JobsCentral.

Existing investors, including Royston Tay, co-founder of Zopim, and Huang Shao-Ning, co-founder of JobsCentral, also participated. 

The fresh funding will allow Motorist to “supercharge its growth” in Singapore and Malaysia and venture into Thailand by the end-2021. 

The company also plans to add 100 more employees to its operations in various markets, including a tech team in Vietnam.

Established in 2015 as a contemporary car-dealing platform, Motorist has shifted its focus to support the entire vehicle ownership cycle. It aims to create an ecosystem of smart tools and services such as vehicle purchases, vehicle loans and motor insurance for car owners. 

“As we prepare for the opening of the economy, our team will accelerate our execution across markets to support more motorists in their ownership cycle,” said founder and CEO Damian Sia. 

Also read: Is Singapore ready for the EV revolution?

The startup claims to have served close to 500,000 motorists and facilitated over US$600 million worth of vehicle transactions. Leveraging a team of data scientists with Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI) capabilities, Motorist can personalise user experience over time, primarily through its newly launched features such as incident reporting, workshop recommendation, and online payment. 

Motorist boasts its app assists approximately 10 per cent of the vehicle population with vehicle management matters in Singapore. It aspires to take up as much as 40 per cent of the market share by 2023.

“They have demonstrated their ability to be capital efficient and have built a profitable multimillion-dollar business by mostly bootstrapping,” said Der Shing.

Der Shing added that with the GMV (gross merchandise value) of S$650 million (US$483.34 million), Motorist has become one of the leading car transaction platforms in Singapore, alongside other well-funded competitors.

The two most prominent players in this sector include Carro, which turned unicorn this June with its US$360 million Series C funding, and Carsome, a Malaysia-based used car platform that is eyeing a US IPO in 2022. 

Image credit: Motorists

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