Carousell Said in $1.5 Billion SPAC Deal Talks With L Catterton

, Bloomberg Quint

Carousell Pte, a Singapore-based online classifieds marketplace operator, is in talks to go public through a merger with blank-check company L Catterton Asia Acquisition Corp.

A transaction could value the combined entity at as much as $1.5 billion, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Carousell has entered into exclusive talks with the special purpose acquisition company.

The U.S.-listed SPAC is backed by L Catterton, the $30 billion buyout firm minority-owned by Paris-based luxury goods company LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE and billionaire Bernard Arnault’s investment firm.

The SPAC plans to carry out due diligence on Carousell over the coming weeks with the goal of reaching a merger agreement as early as this quarter, the people said. The deal may include a private investment in public equity, or PIPE, worth a few hundred million dollars.

Led by L Catterton Asia managing partners Chinta Bhagat and Scott Chen, the SPAC raised $250 million last year to target a combination with companies in the high-growth, consumer technology sectors across Asia. It is sponsored by L Catterton Asia’s $1.45 billion third fund.

The platform Carousell was founded in 2012 and now counts Telenor Group, Rakuten Ventures, Naver, and Sequoia Capital India among its backers. The firm has since expanded to eight markets across Southeast Asia, Taiwan and Hong Kong, allowing users to buy and sell a diverse range of products from cars to gadgets and fashion accessories. It runs several online marketplaces including Carousell, in Vietnam, Mudah in Malaysia and OneKyat in Myanmar.

The company has been exploring a U.S. listing via a SPAC deal, Bloomberg News reported in June, joining a growing list of companies across Southeast Asia. Ride-hailing provider Grab Holdings Ltd. and Altimeter Growth Corp. completed one of the largest SPAC deals ever in December. Also last year, Singapore’s online real estate firm PropertyGuru Pte agreed to go public through a merger with Bridgetown 2 Holdings Ltd., the blank-check company backed by billionaires Richard Li and Peter Thiel.

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