Did you know that China and the Middle East have been expanding the scale of their economic collaborations? This trend is increasingly evident across various industries, with a particular emphasis on the thriving technology sectors.
One example is the automotive industry. Chinese companies like BeyonCa, Pony.ai, and Nio have ventured into the Middle East to leverage the region’s opportunities, focusing especially on the Saudi Arabian and UAE markets.
Simultaneously, a growing number of Middle Eastern financial entities are establishing offices or subsidiaries in China. Leading the way in this endeavor are entities such as the Mubadala Investment Company and the Saudi Public Investment Fund, underscoring their significant interest and commitment to the Chinese market.
The deepening economic ties between China and the Middle East introduce a compelling dynamic to an increasingly intricate and fragmented global landscape.
What are your thoughts on the rising trend of cross-border investments? We welcome your insights at: [email protected].
That’s all for this week. If there are any news or updates you’d like us to feature, you can also get in touch with us via the email above.
BondbloX secures USD 6 million in Series B round
The Singapore-based fintech company has raised USD 6 million in a Series B funding round. Beacon Venture Capital, the corporate venture arm of Thailand’s Kasikornbank, took part in this round alongside existing shareholders MassMutual Ventures and Citigroup. Past investors including Potato Productions and Octava also contributed to this round.
BondBloX has earmarked the newly raised funds to be utilized for the expansion of the BondbloX Bond Exchange, its digital platform that facilitates the trading of fractional and full-sized bonds. A portion of the funds will also be used to support its expansion into India’s Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT City).
“BondbloX is truly innovating bond investing and disrupting an asset class which has lagged in digitization. The use of distributed ledger technology coupled with traditional financial custodians excites us and has great potential to reshape the bond market for all,” said Thanapong Na Ranong, managing director of Beacon Venture Capital.
OxPay Financial acquires stake in Diners Payment Indonesia
The Singapore-based financial services provider has agreed to acquire a 45% stake in Diners Payment Indonesia (DPI), an Indonesian payment processing company, for USD 1.08 million. The deal will be financed using a combination of cash and OxPay’s shares, subject to the finalization of definitive agreements and due diligence reviews.
OxPay currently operates in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Thailand. The move to acquire a substantial stake in DPI is expected to help expand its presence in the Indonesian market.
Happly secures USD 1.75 million in seed round
The Australian relocation services platform has launched after completing a USD 1.75 million seed funding round. The round saw the participation of various investors including Danny Hanna, CEO of Hannas Group, and Max Cunningham, CEO of FCX.
Happly plans to utilize the funds for product development, market expansion, and a nationwide rollout. —Australian Financial Review
LifeBid secures USD 1.45 million in equity funding
The Australian insurtech startup has secured USD 1.45 million in an equity funding round, attracting the participation of 147 new investors, who hail primarily from the life insurance and financial advisory sectors.
LifeBid will utilize the newly raised funds to develop and launch its platform. —Insurance Business Magazine
01.AI achieves unicorn status with billion-dollar valuation
Founded in March this year, Chinese artificial intelligence startup 01.AI has achieved unicorn status within just eight months of operation by reaching a valuation of over USD 1 billion in its latest funding round.
Notably, 01.AI’s funding round drew the participation of Alibaba Cloud, the cloud computing business of Chinese tech giant Alibaba Group. —Bloomberg
Recent deals completed in China:
- SparkEdge Capital, a Chinese venture capital firm, has closed an oversubscribed blind pool, surpassing RMB 900 million (USD 123.6 million). This fund will focus specifically on advancing the new energy sector. —DealStreetAsia
- RigenBio, a Shanghai-based biotechnology company, has completed a pre-Series B round of financing, securing an eight-figure RMB sum. This round was led by Jinsheng Investment and saw the participation of existing investor BioTrack Capital. Haoyue Capital acted as the exclusive financial advisor. —36Kr
- AidLux, a Chengdu-based artificial intelligence-of-things (AIoT) company, has announced the completion of a pre-Series A+ funding round led by ICY Capital, raising close to RMB 100 million (USD 13.7 million). —36Kr
- Daochong Technology, a Ningbo-based battery manufacturing platform, has completed a pre-Series A round of financing, raising an eight-figure RMB sum. The round was led by Chengwei Capital and saw the participation of existing investor Ferry Venture Capital. AGV will use the funds for R&D, market expansion, and ecosystem development. —36Kr
Latest venture capital deals in India:
- GoMechanic, a Gurugram-headquartered car service and repair company, has announced the completion of a USD 6 million funding round. The investors of this round remain undisclosed. —VCCircle
- Quickwork, a Mumbai-based no-code automation and API integration platform, has secured USD 2.5 million in a pre-series A2 funding round from The Sparkle Fund (DMI Alternative Investment Fund) and NIS Ventures Group. The funds will be utilized to enhance Quickwork’s platform features and invest in R&D. Additionally, the company plans to enter new markets, establish strategic partnerships, and scale its operations. —Inc42
- LivSYT, a Hyderabad-based construction management software startup, has raised USD 2.5 million in a seed funding round from Valley Quad and Inventus Capital. It will allocate the funds toward its US market expansion plans and the exploration of new AI and machine learning use cases. —Inc42
- Zepto, a Mumbai-based quick commerce company, has raised an additional USD 31.25 million in a Series E funding round led by Goodwater Capital and Nexus Venture Partners. The round also saw the participation of angel investors. —Inc42
- WishCare, a D2C personal care brand, has raised USD 2.4 million in its inaugural funding round from Unilever Ventures. The funds will be directed toward WishCare’s R&D and market expansion initiatives. —VCCircle
- Stackr Labs, a Web3 startup, has raised USD 5.5 million in a seed funding round led by Archetype. The round also saw participation from Lemniscap, Crypto Startup School (by a16z), and Superscrypt, among others. Stackr Labs will utilize the funds to expand its team, prepare for the launch of its platform, and build its developer ecosystem. —VCCircle
- GetSetHome, a home sharing and rental platform, has secured USD 1 million in a seed funding round from Mistry Ventures. The platform will utilize the capital to further expand its market presence and enhance its technology platform. —VCCircle
- BranchX, a fintech startup, has secured INR 75 million (USD 900,000) in a bridge funding round. The round saw participation from various angel investors including Abdul Khaliq (Gulf International Investment), Rais Motlekar, and Afzal Modak. The funds will be directed toward product development and market expansion. —VCCircle
- Offee, a Mumbai-based edtech platform, has raised INR 52.5 million (USD 630,000) in a funding round from the JITO Incubation and Innovation Foundation (JIIF), the Bombay Industry Association (BIA), and the Research Innovation Incubation Design Labs (Riidl). The newly acquired funds are earmarked for product development, scaling operations, and the expansion of the platform into new markets. —VCCircle
Authentick, LXA, Gother, and more led yesterday’s headlines:
- Authentick, a Singapore-based digital collectibles startup, raised USD 4 million in an investment round led by Menyala, a Temasek-backed venture builder. It will utilize the funds to further develop its platform and partnerships with major online retailers.
- LXA, a Singapore-based mortgage-focused tech startup, raised USD 10 million in a seed funding round led by New Enterprise Associates (NEA), with participation from Openspace Ventures and EDBI.
- Thai online travel agency Traveligo rebranded as Gother, concurrently securing USD 25 million in a funding round led by Beacon Venture Capital, a subsidiary of Kasikornbank, led the investment.
If there are any news or updates you’d like us to feature, get in touch with us at: [email protected].