Kr-Asia Daily: Didi Acquires Bike-Sharing Startup Bluegogo, Escalating The Competition in China’s Transportation Industry

Plus, Regional VC firm Gobi Partners expands ASEAN team with two new VPs. Uber is studying a subscription model for UberEats, its food delivery service.

Photo by The Roaming Platypus on Unsplash

The transportation scene in China is seeing the competition escalates. After announcing a $4 billion investment to beef up AI, EVs and global market presence, China’s top player in the ride-hailing industry, Didi Chuxing acquired the bike-sharing startup Bluegogo, which was believed to have bite the dust.

Facing the competition from Meituan’s newly launched ride-hailing services, Didi Chuxing’s foray into the bike-sharing industry would probably earn the company a better position in the increasingly fierce battle.

Kr-ASIA Daily is a five-minute read to brief you everything you need to know to start your day. We only choose the latest tech & startup news that is worth your time, with a focus on Southeast Asia and China.

Southeast Asia:

SE Asia: Regional VC firm Gobi Partners expands ASEAN team with two new VPs. (KrASIA)

The Philippines: Energy service provider AboitizPower has completed its takeover of a 59-megawatt solar project in the Philippines after acquiring 100% equity interest in its local solar joint venture partner, SunEdison Philippines BV. (Deal Street Asia)

The Philippines: Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company, the Philippine-listed banking behemoth, has got an approval from apex bank to complete the acquisition of a 20% stake in Metrobank Card from its joint venture partner ANZ Funds for $148 million. (Deal Street Asia)

The Philippines: The country’s central bank has urged the public to raise caution when buying or investing in cryptocurrencies in an advisory. (Deal Street Asia)

Indonesia: Medtech startup Doktersiaga launches hospital directory chatbot which is now available on Facebook Messenger, enabling users to search for the nearest hospitals and healthcare facilities. (e27)

Cambodia: Tech media Geeks In Cambodia teamed up with Indonesia-based Coworking and Coliving spaces chain Outpost to support the Cambodian startup community through a startup sponsorship scheme, providing Coworking space among other benefits. (e27)

Indonesia: Seed and early-stage investment firm, Plug and Play’s Indonesian branch, announced nine startups in its first batch have raised follow-on funding from various investors.  (e27) 

China:

Didi has acquired the bike-sharing startup Bluegogo, foraying into the bike-sharing industry. The company also have previously invested in ofo and is said to be working on its own bike-sharing brand. (36Kr)

Alibaba Group is reportedly in talks to pick up a significant minority stake in logistics company XpressBees, investing up to $100 million, taking on homegrown Flipkart and global rival Amazon. (Economic Times)

LeEco founder Jia Yueting said the reason why he didn’t come back to China as alleged by China’s regulators is that his EV company Faraday Future need him to work in the U.S. Jia authorized his brother and wife to fulfill his responsibility as the shareholder of LeEco to arrange the affairs of his unpaid debt. (36Kr)

Letv plans to raise ¥3 billion (around $462 million) from existing and new investors. (36Kr)

Meituan’s ride-hailing service raises subsidies to drivers, giving up to ¥600 million (around $92.4 million) during ten months’ operation. (QQ.com)

Ride-hailing platform Yongche reduced the fees it charged from drivers to 5% of the price for rides. (techweb)

After securing a $200 million financing round joint by NetEase, Pokemon Go’s developer Niantic wishes to enter the Chinese market with AR and LBS-powered games. (36Kr)

Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei said manufacturer need to keep good quality while reducing costs for low-end products, in a meeting at Huawei. (NetEase)

Baidu rolled out its first paid audio content Baidu Xiaoke, covering areas of self-development, parenting, financing and career development. (36Kr)

WeChat denied speculations that it’s spying on its users chat record. (36Kr)

JD’s logistics arm JD Logistics led a ¥150 million (around $23.1 million) Series C round in Fuyoukache, a long distance truck logistics service provider. (36Kr)

Tencent poured ¥100 million strategic investment in cybersecurity startup AISEC, reaching a partnership in cybersecurity and cloud computing. (AISEC)

Kai-Fu Lee from Sinovation Ventures said supports from the Chinese government and favorable policies will continue boost the development of AI in China. (36Kr)

Tencent has tightened regulations on inappropriate behavior in its popular game King of Glory. (IT Home)

Cosmetic shopping platform JuMei.com saw a 9.2% decrease in its revenue and a 27.8% reduction in its net profit for shareholders, in the first half of 2017. (Techweb)

World:

Image credit to 123rf.com.cn

Uber is studying a subscription model for its food delivery service, UberEats, running tests in a few cities in the UK. (Business Insider)

Bitcoin is likely to boost the Japanese economy, as the hefty gains will spur consumer spending, according to analysts at Nomura. (Bloomberg)

Snapchat is considering to roll out a new ad scheme that makes users watch the ads for at least 3 seconds. (Sina)

Tesla is to soon roll out its automatic windshield wiper for Model S and Model X. (gasgoo)

Price of Ether rose to an all-time high, hitting $899.5 according to exchange platform Biance. (Wallstreetcn)

Apple reported acquiring Vancouver-based app tools company Buddybuild. (Sina)

Samsung acknowledged the problem in its Galaxy Note 8 batteries which results in difficulties while charging and switching on. (Techweb)

The probability for Apple to acquire Netflix stands at 40%, according to analysts at Citigroup. (Techweb)

Elon Musk invested another $1 million to the tunnel project in Los Angeles which is run by Musk’s The Boring Company. (Techweb)

Chinese mobile manufacturer has an overwhelming advantage over their Indian rivals who failed to match the Chinese brigade namely Xiaomi, OPPO, and Vivo in terms of products, marketing and distribution. (Economic Times)

The global output of smartphones is expected to reach 1.53 billion in 2018, rising 5% compared to the number in 2017. (IT Home)

India’s pharmacy chain operator MedPlus secured a $115 million debt financing from Goldman Sachs, adding its total financing to $220 million. (Tuoniao)

California-headquartered user engagement and analytics platform CleverTap secured a new financing round led by Recruit Holdings and joint by Sequoia Capital and Accel Partners. (Tuoniao)

India’s resume and profile verification platform IDfy scored a $3 million Series B financing round led by NEA with participation from NB Ventures, Neelesh Bhatnagar, and Dream Incubator. (Tuoniao)

India’s online home design and décor startup Livespace mopped up a $2 million in a Series C round led by Indian media company Bennett, Coleman & Company Ltd (BCCL) (Tuoniao)