Fintech GoBear shuts down
Singapore fintech startup GoBear will cease operations, joining a wave of Asian startups that struggled due to the global pandemic.
The comparison website for financial products, which served some 55 million users across Asia since 2015, cited difficulty in raising funds and low demand during the pandemic as reasons for the closure. The company laid off 11% of its workforce in September 2020.
Singapore-headquartered financial services and data platform GoBear announced on 5 Jan that it will be ceasing operations and will begin an “orderly closure of the business”.
The fintech firm cited the failure to raise additional funds from existing or new investors as the primary reason for closure.
It added that the COVID-19 global pandemic made the operating and fundraising environment “very challenging”.
Other factors included a prolonged period of weakened demand for some financial products and services, in particular travel insurance.
Headquartered in Singapore, GoBear employs 165 staff in six offices across Asia. Employees will be provided their required notice periods and salaries. The firm said it intends to fulfil existing commitments to employees, partners and vendors, and work with the relevant authorities to ensure adherence to local laws and regulations.
Currently, there are a few similar business model such as moneysmart, CompareAsiaGroup, PolicayPal and MoneyOwl. PolicyPal and MoneyOwl are focusing on insurance products. Due to COVID-19, there's a demand for insurance but we expect the demand for travel insurance will be going down.