Kr-Asia Daily: Kr Space Scores the Biggest Investment To Date in China’s Co-Working Space

Plus, Bukalapak is planning to build an R&D center in a bid to beef up its ability in AI, machine learning, and drone delivery. Live trivia games went viral in China.

Millions of people stop what they were doing and pick up their phone to answer 12 questions. That is happening in China.

Adopting the successful model of HQ Trivia, tech giants like Toutiao and Baidu, live streaming platforms such as Inke, are participating in this game, pushing the cash prize to 2 million yuan (around $307,000).

The suddenly popular trivia game also draw attention from Chinese tech tycoons like Tencent founder Pony Ma and Qihoo 360 founder Zhou Hongyi. Ma thinks regulations are expected to intervene while Zhou thinks there is no need for that and more tech giants are likely to join the game.

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:

Indonesia: E-commerce platform Bukalapak is planning to build an R&D center in a bid to beef up its ability in AI, machine learning, and drone delivery. (e27)

Singapore: ASX-listed internet venture builder Fatfish Internet Group, has agreed to acquire a 51% stake in Singapore-based startup APAC Mining for $1 million. The startup focuses on investment and management of large-scale high-end computing facilities in Asia to conduct cryptocurrency mining. (Deal Street Asia)

Indonesia: Wantedly, a Japanese job search platform, has announced the cessation of its operations in Indonesia. (e27)

Vietnam: LeFlair, the Vietnamese e-commerce platform, has raised $3 million in a Series A round led by Capital Management Group. (e27)

Singapore: GIC-backed Global Logistic Properties, the warehouse operator, is to delist from the Singapore Stock exchange on January 22, following the privatization deal by Nesta Investment Holdings, the vehicle owned by Hopu, Hillhouse Capital, SMG, Bank of China Group Investment and Vanke. (Deal Street Asia)

Singapore: Singapore’s TNB Ventures and Australia-based fund manager Aura Group have achieved the first close of their Southeast Asia-focused fund TNB Aura Fund 1 at $22.5 million. (Deal Street Asia)

Indonesia: Three of the country’s state-owned enterprises (SOEs) are set to issue Komodo bonds this year. (Deal Street Asia)

Myanmar: Myanmar-based venture capital, BOD Tech Ventures, has invested an undisclosed Series A amount in Innoveller, a SaaS provider for bus ticketing solutions Innoveller. (Deal Street Asia)

Vietnam: Leflair, a Vietnam-based online retailer, has banked $3 million in a Series A funding round led by Capital Management Group. (Deal Street Asia)

Vietnam: On February 7, mobile network operator MobiFone is to hold the second round of auctions to divest its shares in Southeast Asia Commercial Joint Stock Bank (SeABank) and Tien Phong Commercial Joint Stock Bank (TPBank).

Malaysia: Ekuiti Nasional Bhd (Ekuinas), Malaysia’s state-owned PE firm, has divested its entire stake in local education company APIIT Education Group for $180 million to a joint venture vehicle owned by its existing management team and private PE firm KV Asia Capital. (Deal Street Asia)

Singapore: Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC, Cortland Partners, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) have established a joint venture to acquire and renovate multi-family units in the U.S. (Deal Street Asia)

China:

Kr Space, China’s leading co-working startup, scores ¥600 million (around $92.12 million) in a Pre-B funding round, marking the biggest investment in cash in China’s co-working space.

Until now, existing investors include China Minsheng Investment Group (CMIG), IDG Capital, Prometheus Capital, Colony Capital, Unity Venture, Gobi Partners, 36Kr CEO Liu Chengcheng, and entrepreneur Feng Lun. (36Kr)

Live trivia games are going viral in China. With companies launching their own games one after another, the cash prize keeps going high. Commenting on a WeChat moment, Tencent founder Pony Ma stated regulators are expected to intervene while Qihoo 360 founder Zhou Hongyi thinks more Tech Giants are going to weigh in. (36Kr)

Didi upgrades its luxury taxi service with pre-set preferences, such as preferred services and whether to play the music in the car. (China News)

EV maker Nio claimed the company seeks to sell 200,000 to 300,000 EVs this year. (QQ.com)

News aggregator Toutiao teamed up with the University of Michigan to battle fake news with AI technologies. (36Kr)

Weibo partner, video live streaming platform Yizhibo, launched a live trivia game, alluring users with 1 million-yuan (around $153,700) cash prize. (NetEase)

At CES 2018, EV maker Xiaopeng unveiled its model G3 which will see a mass production and is to be available for sale this Spring. (36Kr)

Tencent teamed up with local public security bureau in Shandong province to launch a video chatting-based feature which allows users to call the police through WeChat official account. (The Paper)

JD and UNDP signed an MOU to promote sustainable consumption. (JD)

JD reached a partnership with U.S.-based flexible display company Royole Corporation to jointly push for the commercial use of the latter’s flexible display. (JD)

Beijing regulators placed 759 fences where commuters can park their bikes. This move comes in a bid to solve the parking mess cause mainly by the booming bike-sharing services in China. (bjnews)

Tencent plans to launch medium-term notes worth $10 billion. (techweb)

Alibaba is set to sue sellers who sell counterfeits on its e-commerce platform. (36Kr)

Alibaba launched IoT open protocol IoTConnect at CES 2018. (iFeng)

At CES 2018, Alibaba’s enterprise messaging app DingTalk announced a plan for global expansion. (iFeng)

Apple is going to relocate Chinese customer’s iCloud data and operations from the US to mainland China to comply with China’s laws. (9To5Mac)

Blockchain community platform QunQun launched on bitcoin exchange platform Huobi. (Huobi)

Bitcoin mining in China is hugely profitable that miners can make money as long as the bitcoin price is above $6925. (Bloomberg)

Baidu’s search app Jaindansousuo rides on the wave of China’s online trivia game, enabling users to search answers with voice control. (Sina)

Regulators in Shanghai plans to deter fake news on Weibo. (Internet Shanghai)

Xiaomi has 287 stores in 170 cities which have served 67.13 million customers in 2017, according to Xiaomi founder Lei Jun. (Weibo)

WeChat is to tighten its grip over vulgar and fake content on its platform. (WeChat)

Alibaba’s e-commerce website Tmall and logistics arm Cainiao launched a delivery service which allow customers to receive purchases as fast as within 2 hours. (36Kr)

Chairman of Iflytek, China’s software enterprise, claimed AI technologies will translate into profit in 3 to 5 years. (36Kr)

World:

Line is working to integrate cryptocurrencies into its messaging platform to keep users coming back to its app. (Bloomberg)

Renault, Nissan and Mitsubishi have launched a $1 billion corporate venture capital fund to invest in startups working in the field of EV, autonomous driving, network connectivity and AI. (TechCrunch)

ProShares, Raffety Assets Management, and VanEck all withdrew their Bitcoin futures-related ETF proposals from SEC consideration, at the regulator’s request. (Cointelegraph)

Ex-hedge fund manager, Mike Novogratz, is starting a merchant bank dedicated to cryptocurrencies and blockchain-based ventures. (Bloomberg)

Microsoft partners with Qualcomm to promote the adoption of its smart assistant Cortana into more devices. (Venture Beat)

Google unveiled its VR 180 camera that can live stream 180-degree VR video and save panoramic images to Google Photos. (Wired)

Sony is planning a deeper push into robotics after its robot dog aibo. (Bloomberg)

Snapchat’s map feature introduced last year has failed to catch on and its popularity has declined sharply. (Bloomberg)

Google released a VR headset Mirage Solo to spread VR beyond gaming. (Bloomberg)