Kr-Asia Daily: Didi Is Set to Launch Bike-Sharing Platform

Plus, Ola teamed up with ICICI Bank. Myanmar’s digital consulting startup Nexlabs raised a six-digit equity investment led by Singapore-based VC firm VIMIC.

Photo by Tom Ritson on Unsplash.

China’s ride-hailing top player Didi hit the headline again today. The company announced it is set to introduce an in-app platform, providing bike-sharing services of ofo, its self-owned brand, and Bluegogo, whose service is now operated by Didi.

Its expansion comes with a push for the deposit-free services, facilitating commuters and reducing the pressure on Didi from China’s regulators.

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:

Myanmar: Nexlabs, a Yangon-based digital consulting startup, has raised a six-digit equity investment led by city-state-based VC firm Vulpes Innovative Myanmar Investment Company (VIMIC). (Deal Street Asia)

Indonesia: PT Tempo Inti Media, one of Indonesia’s largest media outlets, seeks to raise around $7 million by issuing new shares, according to a prospectus filing to the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX). (Deal Street Asia)

Singapore: City-state-based job matching platform GrabJobs seeks to raise $3.75 million in a Series A round by the middle of this year, as the startup plans to double its team size and expand to other SE Asian markets. (Deal Street Asia)

Singapore: ST Aerospace, aerospace arm of ST Engineering headquartered in Singapore, has invested $2 million in Total Engine Asset Management (TEAM), a JV in which it owns a 50 percent interest. (Deal Street Asia)

Singapore: In 2017, the Singapore Exchange (SGX) saw a total of $3.53 billion being raised through IPOs, marking a record-high in the past four years. Real estate investment trusts (REITs) and business trusts kept dominate Singapore’s IPO pipeline. (Deal Street Asia)

Singapore: Budget accommodation platform RedDoorz has named Bhanu Chopra as an independent director and Philip Wolf as a board advisor. (Deal Street Asia)

Thailand: VGI Global Media, the Thailand-listed out-of-home media service provider, has formed a joint venture with media and public relations consultancy Supremo Co to expand its media services. (Deal Street Asia)

Vietnam: The startup space in Vietnam faces challenges including valuation mismatch and lack of scale & exit options. (Deal Street Asia)

Malaysia: The Securities Commission has asked CopyCash, the Singapore-based Ethereum blockchain-based platform, to halt its planned activities including an ICO. (e27)

Vietnam: Silkway Ventures launched a P2P lending platform in Vietnam. (Silkway Ventures)

Vietnam: TNB Aura Fund 1 closed its first investment in an undisclosed Vietnamese e-commerce and logistics startup. (TNB Ventures)

China:

Didi announced it will launch a bike-sharing platform, pushing for the deposit-free bike-sharing services. It also claimed, instead of acquiring the beleaguered bike-sharing startup Bluegogo, it is just hosting Bluegogo’s operation. (Kr-Asia)

At CES 2018, Baidu announced it will achieve the mass production of its autonomous driving bus in 2018. The company plans to concentrate on AI-powered innovation, specifically in the use of its search engine, news aggregations, and video streaming. (36Kr)

Baidu also announced a partnership with Udacity, a U.S-based online education portal at the CES 2018. The two plan to collaborate on introductory courses for Baidu’s self-driving open platform Apollo. (Technode)

Following the success of HQ Trivia, China’s live streaming platforms rushed to start their own live trivia games with cash prizes. Inke-backed Zhishi Chaoren, or Superman Cheese, has received ¥100 million (around $15.31 million) advertisement revenue from Qudian’s car installment arm Dabai Qiche. (36Kr)

Orient Securities Company sued Jia Yuemin, brother of LeEco founder Jia Yueting, for not repurchasing the pledged equity and paying the interest. (Sina)

Ant Financial has reportedly stopped providing its lending services to some users. Alibaba’s financial arm claimed it is part of the normal practice of adjusting users’ qualification and quota. (IT Home)

Regulators in Nanjing city has asked Meituan to tighten its grip on its ride-hailing service, specifically, to prohibit vehicles without a local license from providing rides in the city. (Youth)

EV maker Faraday Future’s car FF91 hit the road before the CES 2018. (36Kr)

Xu Xiaoping, founder of the seed-stage focused venture fund ZhenFund, believes entrepreneurs should embrace opportunities brought by the technology of blockchain. (ZhenFund)

Sequoia Capital China has invested in the $40 million Series C round of Australian graphic design company Canva. (e27)

Hong Kong-based mobile gaming company Kunlun Group has acquired Grinder, the world’s most famous LGBT dating app. (Venture Beat)

Qihoo 360 plans to launch a scheme of shared cloud, claiming it to be the very first shared cloud platform based on the blockchain. (IT Home)

China’s bitcoin exchange platform btc9.com has stopped its cryptocurrency-related services and will shift to become a blockchain service provider. (btc9.com)

Togher with French president Emmanuel Macron, more than 50 French enterprises pay a visit to China. According to Alibaba’s e-commerce website Tmall, this visit will deepen the partnership between the two countries in the agricultural areas, with more French meats exported to China. (36Kr)

World:

Ola teamed up with ICICI Bank, allowing users of the bank to book and pay for Ola rides through the bank’s app. (ICICI)

U.S.-based smart lock maker August Home has officially launched its in-home delivery service in partnership with a last mile logistics company Deliv. (The Verge)

Following reports of some AMD PCs becoming unbootable after installing recent updates, Microsoft halts its AMD Meltdown and Spectre patches. (The Verge)

Google introduced its Google assistant to its app Android auto in the U.S. (TechCrunch)

At CES 2018, Intel’s keynote focused on its major breakthrough in quantum computing chip, VR application, self-learning chip, and a driverless vehicle platform. (zdnet)

Steve Jobs Inc, an Italian fashion brand named after the Apple founder, beats Apple in trademark lawsuit and will be allowed to keep its name and logo. (Telegraph)

Indian SME loan startup Lending Kart banked $4.7 million by selling non-convertible debentures to Netherlands development bank. (ICICI)

Apple updated its battery change policy, allowing users to change their iPhone battery at the price of $29 once a year. (Techweb)

Amit Fulay, head of product of Google’s smart messaging app Allo, is to job-hop to Facebook. (IT Home)

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds has outperformed Minecraft to become the most popular PC game, according to SteamSpy. (zol)

South Korea is the third-largest country by bitcoin exchange volume, after Japan and the U.S. Most bitcoin holders are young students and employees, but there are also many rich women in Gangnam areas participating in the bitcoin frenzy. (awtmt)

India’s bike-sharing startup Bikxie has banked a $350,000 seed round investment from VC firm GEMs Partners and ex-executive of Megma Fincorp. (Tuoniao)

Eastman Kodak announced it will roll out its token Kodakcoin in partnership with Wenn Digital. Following the announcement, the share price of the company rose by 119.3% to $6.8. (WallStreetcn)