Carousell snaps up sneaker marketplace Ox Street

Online marketplace Carousell has acquired Ox Street, a Singapore-based marketplace for authenticated sneakers and streetwear, the company announced on Monday. It did not disclose the deal value.

Founded in 2019, Ox Street is focused on making the second-hand sneaker purchase experience more seamless for Southeast Asian youth by inspecting and authenticating the sneakers before they reach buyers.

Post-acquisition, Ox Street will continue to operate as its own brand, retaining its name, platform, and team.

“We initially started a conversation with Carousell on partnering up to provide authentication as a service for sneakers, but as discussions progressed, we found so much common ground in how we see the future, that we decided it would be much more powerful for Ox Street to fully join the Carousell group,” said Gijs Verheijke, founder and chief executive of Ox Street.

“Our focus markets align nearly one to one, and in these markets, Carousell was actually the first, and remains the largest marketplace for sneakers and streetwear.”

Data portal VentureCap Insights shows that Verheijke owns 90 percent of the company, with the remainder held by an entity, Aito Ventures. The company recorded US$18,975 in revenue in 2019, with a US$206,931 loss.

Carousell chief executive Quek Siu Rui said that he sees “immense opportunity” in Ox Street’s authentication capabilities. He is optimistic about the “brand love they have created among their dedicated community of sneakerheads and fashion enthusiasts, especially among Gen Z”.

The deal comes weeks after Carousell raised US$100 million in a round led by South Korean private equity firm STIC, valuing the company at US$1.1 billion. It is said to be considering a public listing in the US through a merger with a special-purpose acquisition company. Previous regulatory filings indicate that Carousell aims to provide its investors with an exit by 2024, at a valuation of at least US$1.13 billion.

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