Alibaba injects another USD 634 million into Lazada
Lazada has secured an additional USD 634 million in capital from its parent company, Alibaba Group, bringing the total amount injected into its subsidiary to over USD 1.8 billion for the year.
This funding comes as Alibaba adapts its strategies to counter the growing threat from competitors such as Tencent, PDD Holdings (operator of Pinduoduo and Temu), and Shopee, among others. Lazada is a key international commerce business for Alibaba, alongside AliExpress and Trendyol. Alibaba has been focusing on enhancing Lazada’s monetization rate through increased value-added services, as indicated in the company’s latest annual report.
The capital injection also coincides with TikTok Shop’s partnership with GoTo Group’s Tokopedia, signaling heightened competition in Indonesia and potentially Southeast Asia. This collaboration may impact Lazada’s plans to expand its presence in the country in a cost-effective and sustainable manner.
TikTok invests USD 1.5 billion in GoTo’s Tokopedia to restart e-commerce business in Indonesia
ByteDance’s TikTok has reached a preliminary agreement to acquire 75.01% of Tokopedia from Indonesia’s GoTo Group for approximately USD 840 million, as per a joint statement released yesterday.
TikTok Shop’s business in Indonesia will be integrated into the existing Tokopedia entity, with its shopping features to be operated and maintained by the expanded entity.
TikTok has also committed to investing over USD 1.5 billion in the expanded Tokopedia entity over time, providing funding required by the business without further dilution to GoTo.
This new tie-up will allow TikTok to resume the operations of TikTok Shop in Indonesia—a move crucial for TikTok to stay on track with its broader plans to double down on e-commerce. Indonesia is one of the online shopping service’s largest markets since it launched in 2021, but was brought to a halt when Jakarta forced its suspension after requiring social media and social commerce companies to separate payments from shopping.
Joining forces as a combined entity is also expected to unlock improvements in operational efficiency, intensifying competition with major rival Shopee.
Seraya Partners completes USD 800 million Asia-focused infrastructure fund
The Singapore-based private equity firm has announced the completion of Seraya Partners Fund I, its first fund. The fund’s final close was USD 800 million, including co-investments, surpassing its initial target of USD 750 million.
Among the investors that have committed to the fund include various sovereign wealth funds, pension funds, insurers, and family offices from North America, Europe, and the Asia Pacific. The limited partners (LPs) include the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), Alberta Investment Management Company (AIMCo), and funds and accounts managed by Blackrock.
Seraya Partners Fund I will focus on Asia and invest in next-generation infrastructure, focusing on tech-enabled energy transition and digital infrastructure platforms.
Emellience Partners leads investment in Yoii
Emellience Partners, the Tokyo-based corporate venture arm of Biprogy, has led the latest investment in Yoii, a Japanese company that operates Yoii Fuel, a revenue-based finance platform. The amount of funding raised by Yoii was not disclosed.
Japan’s NGA raises JPY 600 million to develop AI recruitment service HelloBoss
NGA, a Japanese developer and operator of “next-generation apps,” has secured JPY 600 million (USD 4.12 million) in pre-Series A funding from Yunqi Partners and Golden Egg Ventures.
According to NGA’s statement, the company will use the funds to develop HelloBoss, its artificial intelligence-powered recruitment service. A portion of the funds will also be used to set up a new office.
In conjunction with this fundraise, NGA has also appointed Yanbo Xue as its chief scientific advisor. Xue is expected to lead the development of HelloBoss’ AI technology.
Relevance AI secures AUD 15 million
The Australian AI company has followed up its USD 3 million funding round in 2021 with a new AUD 15 million (USD 9.9 million) round led by King River Capital.
The latest round also saw the participation of Surge by Peak XV Partners, Galileo Ventures, and Insight Partners. —Australian Financial Review
Block Builder raises AUD 2 million to launch in the UK and the US
The Australian prop tech company has raised AUD 2 million (USD 1.3 million) from Correlation Australia Holdings and is looking to secure another AUD 2 million to launch its cashless deposit platform in the UK and the US.
Blockbuilder owns Downsizer.com, a platform that enables retirees to purchase property without a deposit by using equity in their existing property. —Australian Financial Review
Nat Habit snags USD 10.2 million in Series B round
Naturohabit, the owner and operator of beauty and wellness brand Nat Habit, has snagged USD 10.2 million in a Series B funding round led by Bertelsmann India Investments. The round also saw the participation of new investors Amazon India Fund, Mirabilis Investment Trust, Sharrp Ventures, and existing investor Fireside Ventures.
The company plans to allocate a portion of the funds to support exits for early-stage investors, whose names were not disclosed. These investors anticipate returns of 4.5–5 times their initial investment over a four-year period. The remaining funds will be used to expand the company’s offline presence, diversify its product offerings, conduct R&D, and hire talent. —VCCircle.
Recent deals completed in China:
- China Literature, a leading online literature and IP incubation platform, has announced an agreement to acquire the related assets of Tencent Animation and Comics. The total cash consideration for this acquisition is RMB 600 million (USD 83.5 million).
- Hong Kong-headquartered private equity firm Ascendent Capital Partners has announced an agreement to acquire Hollysys Automation Technologies through an all-cash transaction valued at approximately USD 1.66 billion. The completion of this deal is contingent upon shareholder approval and specific closing conditions, including regulatory approvals.
- DST, a new energy vehicle fleet management company, has announced the completion of a USD 80 million funding round from undisclosed investors. The newly raised funds will enable DST to further invest in R&D and its real-time computational analytical capabilities. This will, in turn, strengthen its fleet management capabilities, enabling the company to expand its operations in China.
- PowerLaw AI, a Beijing-based AI company specializing in the legal industry, has raised around RMB 80 million (USD 11.1 million) in a pre-Series B funding round led by BlueRun Venture. The round also saw the participation of eSign and existing investors HongShan, Thunifund, Source Code Capital, Linear Capital, and Zhipu AI. The company will use the funds to consolidate its market position, improve its products, establish a delivery center for future growth, and explore new legal service opportunities for small and medium enterprises. —36Kr
- Featuremaker, a provider of CAD data optimization and post-processing services, has recently completed a pre-Series A funding round, banking an undisclosed amount of investment. The round was led by Casstar. Featuremaker will utilize the funds to enhance its technology, attract new talent, and expand its market presence. —36Kr
- HiDream.ai, a technology company focusing on the development of multimodal generative AI, has completed a new funding round, raising an undisclosed amount. The round was led by an iFlytek Ventures-managed fund with the support of Jiangmen, Alpha Startups, and other institutional investors. HiDream.ai plans to further invest in AI models and product development, focusing on enhancing both image and video generation capabilities. —36Kr
- Tianzhuo Network, a Hangzhou-based information technology services provider, has completed its Series C+ funding round, securing an eight-figure RMB sum at a valuation approximating RMB 1 billion (USD 139.3 million). —36Kr
- Tezeus, an electric bicycle manufacturer, has raised RMB 10 million (USD 1.39 million) in angel funding. The round was led by Lingyuan Science and Technology and saw the participation of Fuju Capital. —36Kr
- Hyperion, a Beijing-based R&D company specializing in metallic circuitry materials such as electronic slurries, pastes, adhesives, and inks, has bagged an eight-figure RMB sum in a Series A2 round of financing from China Capital Management and an AMT Capital-managed fund. Hyperion will allocate the funds toward R&D and the enhancement of its mass production capabilities. —36Kr
- PCG Power, a Beijing-headquartered new energy solutions company, has completed its Series A3 and A4 funding rounds. The lead investors were GLP and United Nova Technology. Huamei International Investment Group, Nio Ventures, and Eastern Bell Capital also reinvested in this round. —36Kr
- SUD Technology, a Hong Kong-based cloud provider of interactive gamification services, has raised an eight-figure RMB sum in a pre-Series A+ funding round led by Dongfang Fongrun. Entrepreneur Liu Yangze also participated in this round. SUD will utilize the newly raised funds for R&D and to develop its content ecology. —36Kr
- Hongyang Quartz, a Jiangsu-based supplier of quartz products, has secured close to RMB 100 million (USD 13.9 million) in a Series B funding round led by Triniti Capital. The funds will enable Hongyang Quartz to expand its business capabilities. —36Kr
- Acadepowder, a Jiangsu-based R&D company specializing in alloy powders, has raised over RMB 120 million (USD 16.7 million) in Series B funding from Hua Capital, WestSummit Capital, Brill Capital, and individual investors. Inno Investment Bank acted as the financial advisor for this round. —36Kr
Andisor, Klinik Pintar, Clove, and more led yesterday’s headlines:
- Andisor, a digital wholesale platform for retail businesses, raised USD 1 million in pre-seed funding from Antler, LaunchVic’s Alice Anderson Fund, Jam Pad Investments, and undisclosed retail operators.
- Klinik Pintar, a Jakarta-based health tech startup, raised USD 5 million in a Series A1 funding round led by Altara Ventures. Golden Gate Ventures, Skystar Capital, Venturra, and other investors also participated in this round.
- Clove, a Sydney-based artificial intelligence-powered recipe platform, raised AUD 4.15 million (USD 2.72 million) in a funding round led by Blackbird Ventures. Other investors that took part in this round include Shakti as well as individual investors from companies like Canva, Pexels, and Google Maps.
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