Kr-Asia Daily: Bitcoin surged past $11,000

Plus, Jakarta-based blockchain starup Pundi X seeks to provide easier access to cryptocurrency. Tencent launched the first Chinese first-person shooter game Glorious Mission.

Image credit to 123rf.com.cn.

The price of Bitcoin keeps skyrocketing and hits an all-time high at $11,000. Investors weigh in while some people seek easier access to the mysterious cryptocurrency. Sailing on the rising tide of Bitcoin, Indonesia’s Pundi X, a blockchain startup seeks to provide easier access to the cryptocurrency.

Southeast Asia:

Screenshot from Pundi website.

Indonesia: Jakarta-based blockchain startup Pundi X has recently unveiled a smart device Pundi X POS that will provide customers a quick and easy access to cryptocurrency. The device will enable offline retailers to sell cryptocurrency directly to customers who will then store it in an e-wallet or use it to make purchases. The startup faces regulatory pressures as the country’s central bank forbids the use of cryptocurrency as a payment method. (e27)

Singapore: Private equity firm CMIA Capital Partners has led an initial investment round in WatchBox, an online platform for second-hand watches, with financial details undisclosed. The Singapore-based PE firm focuses on investment in mid-sized businesses across China and Southeast Asia. (DealStreetAsia)

Vietnam: The country is poised to sell a majority stake in Sabeco, Vietnam’s biggest brewer, at the price of over $5 billion. The deal is to be the country’s biggest-ever state sale. Vietnam has the largest beer market in Southeast Asia and this long-delayed deal attracts brewers who seek access to the local market. (DealStreetAsia)

Singapore: Crypto-FinTech startup Change has raised over $17.5 million via tokens sale from approximately 6,000 investors. The community-oriented startup claimed to have more than 20,000 members. The proceeds will help develop its upcoming digital wallet, banking card and mobile app, through which, customers will be able to manage their cryptocurrency and fiat. (e27)

Indonesia: State-owned telecom firm Telekomunikasi Indonesia is to acquire 70 percent stake in TS Global Network, a Malaysian satellite operator, for $26 million, according to a filing to the Indonesia Stock Exchange. This move comes as the company seeks to expand in the regional market, envisioning a digital telecom company. (DealStreetAsia)

China: 

Screenshot from grsm.qq.

Tencent launched the first Chinese first-person shooter game Glorious Mission for test on both Android and iOS platforms. There were already over 40 million users pre-registered since the beta test on November 8. The game is set to sail on the rising tide of another Tencent hit game PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. (Tencent)

Guangzhou Internet Society (GIS) issued notice on the risk of micro cash loan to curb the financial risk. GIS urged microlenders operating without a license to stop their loan business and report on the on-going loans. It also set a cap of 36 percent on annualized interest rates. (tech.sina)

Alipay launched contactless payment option for parking in partnership with Hang Zhou urban management department. Car owners can directly drive away from parking areas when they enable auto pay through Alipay app. This move is projected to save up to 85 percent time for drivers and improve parking management efficiency by over 50 percent. (news.mydrivers)

Chinese large-cap shares plummeted the most in 17 months as bond selloff is getting out of control. Shares of Thunder, RYB Educationand PPDai dropped respectively by 31.11, 8.42 and 7.55 percent. (Bloomberg)

Chinese mobile news aggregator Yidian Zixun reached a strategic partnership with Zhihu, the Chinese version of Quora. Q & A from Zhihu will enrich Yidian Ziuxun’s content while the later will drive traffic to Zhihu. (36Kr)

Chinese computer vision startup Heils Technology has secured around $1.5 million investment through an angel round led by HJW Fund. Unlike other startups of the same kind such as Face++ and SenseTime, Heils focuses on AI’s compatibility and parallel computing issues. (36Kr)

Chinese online game sparring service platform, Kaiheikeji Digital, has closed a Series A funding round worth $6.8 million led by Sequoia China. The startup plans to use the proceeds in product development and marketing. (36Kr)

China Chang’an Automobile Group reached partnership with Ping An Bank and China Minsheng Bank, envisioning a new industrial chain for new generation cars. The partnership will give financial support to the company’s plan in new energy and smart vehicles. (Finance.iFeng)

World: 

Image credit to 123rf.com.cn.

Bitcoin surged past $11,000 despite warnings that the cryptocurrency is in an asset bubble. The mainstream optimism keeps driving Bitcoin to new highs as more investors weighing in. (Bloomberg)

U.S.-based SaaS logistics startup LogiNext seeks to integrate blockchain into the supply chain to improve visibility and security. The startup is piloting the project with two large organizations in the U.S. and Singapore. (e27)

Shares of Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google (FANG) saw a 3.7 percent drop, making the biggest amount of lost money on a single day. This drop comes as there were speculations that U.S. tax reform prompted traders to flock to firms that are most likely to benefit from a potential reduction in the corporate tax rate such as banks. (Bloomberg)

Tesla’s Model S and Model X regularly require fixes before they can leave the factory, according to former and current employees. Quality checks have routinely revealed defects in more than 90 percent of the luxury cars. Tesla said its quality control process is usually rigorous as it flags and corrects tiniest imperfections. The EV maker declined to comment on those cited by employees. (Reuters)

Apple released a special security update for macOS High Sierra to solve a recently exposed flaw. The vulnerability allows people who require a root users account to create one and assign a password through System Preferences. Apple has promised an update without giving an exact timeline. ( AppleInsider)

Uber’s net loss widened to $1.46 billion in Q3 as the ride-hailing company was undergoing fierce competition, legal issues and regulatory scrutiny. SoftBank has offered to buy shares in Uber at a 30 percent discount to the last private valuation. Other potential buyers include Dragoneer Investment Group, TPG, Tencent and Sequoia Capital. (Bloomberg)

Adobe announced new functions powered by AI including an easy cut-out feature. The technology underpinning new functions comes from Adobe Sensei AI platform which focuses on deep learning and machine learning. Adobe hasn’t disclosed when to launch the new version of Photoshop CC. (news.mydrive)