BEAUTY IN THE FRIDGE

S’pore startups take almost 7 years on average to grow into unicorns: who are they?

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Singapore has ranked fourth in the world for how fast its startups turned into unicorns, according to a global ranking by British price comparison website Money.co.uk.

Singapore currently has six unicorns, and they took an average of six years and 11 months to cross US$1 billion in valuation.

It shares the fourth spot together with United States, which has 378 unicorn companies, and Australia with six unicorn companies.

China tops the list, as 155 of its companies took an average of just five years and 10 months to hit the unicorn status.

Coming in second place is Hong Kong, where they took an average of six years and one month, followed by Japan with six years and three months.

startup to unicorn
Image Credit: Vulcan Post

According to cbinsights.com, there are currently only 750 unicorns in the world.

Money.co.uk also noted that the top-performing sector when it comes to time taken to reach a US$1 billion valuation was auto and transportation, whose 31 unicorns took an average of four years and five months.

Meanwhile, fiintech produced the most unicorns with 131 such start-ups, followed by e-commerce and direct-to-consumer firms with 82 unicorns.

Who are S’pore’s unicorns?

singapore unicorns
Image Credit: cbinsights.com

Although Money.co.uk stated that Singapore is home to six unicorns, cbinsights.com listed seven unicorns in Singapore instead.

Out of Singapore’s unicorns, Grab — the leading “super app” in Southeast Asia — has the biggest valuation at US$14.3 million.

Founded by Harvard graduates Anthony Tan and Tan Hooi-Ling, it has gone beyond being just a ride-hailing app. It now offers various services under its umbrella including food, grocery and parcel delivery, hotel and attractions bookings, as well as financial services like loans, insurance and investment. 

Singapore’s second unicorn is Hyalroute. Founded by Xinglong Huang, it operates a multi-fiber universal connection point that provides the highest values of international network coverage, redundancy, and continuity.

Meanwhile, Trax’s marketing solution enables retailers to increase sales, manage costs and invent new experiences for their customers at all phases of the purchase journey.

The remaining four companies on the list has a joint US$1 billion valuation, and were freshly minted as ‘unicorns’ this year.

Fintech firm NIUM is the latest addition after it raised more than US$200 million in a Series D round led by United States-based Riverwood Capital.

Other notable backers included Temasek, Visa, Vertex Ventures, Beacon Venture Capital and Rocket Capital. Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC also joined the round.


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Featured Image Credit: Reuters / PatSnap / Carro / The Economic Times

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