KrASIA Daily: World’s 3rd-largest Cryptocurrency Exchange Huobi to Incubate Blockchain Startups Worldwide

Plus, Go-Jek provides micro-credit program to take on Grab Financial. Ola and Uber drivers in India are expected to go on a strike today.

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KrASIA Daily: World’s 3rd-largest Cryptocurrency Exchange Huobi to Incubate Blockchain Startups Worldwide

Editor’s note:

The partnership between Huobi and DigitalX100 comes a week after Huobi’s deal with Japan’s SGB Holdings went sour. The Japanese company was planning to launch two cryptocurrency exchanges together with Huobi in Japan.

China banned cryptocurrency exchanges last September. Huobi then launched a portal in Singapore.

KrASIA 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:

Indonesian ride-hailing giant Go-Jek has announced a strategic collaboration between its digital payment system, Go-Pay, and state-owned bank BNI to provide the startup’s network of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) partners with access to the lenders’ micro-credit program
A Go-Jek rider.

Indonesia: Go-Jek has announced a strategic collaboration between its digital payment system, Go-Pay, and state-owned bank BNI to provide the startup’s network of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) partners with access to the lenders’ micro-credit program. (Deal Street Asia)

SE Asia: AirAsia, the low-cost airline in Southeast Asia, is considering an initial coin offering (ICO) as part of a push into financial services. (Tech Crunch)

Singapore: Urban development group Surbana Jurong has signed a deal with a unit of mainland real estate developer China Vanke to jointly develop industrial new towns in China, the Temasek-owned developer said in a statement. (Deal Street Asia)

Singapore: Bank of Singapore, the private bank of Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp., is looking to expand its family office business as the city-state rolls out the red carpet for wealthy investors. (Deal Street Asia)

Singapore: Global financial technology (fintech) group Ayondo Ltd has officially registered its offer document with the Singapore Exchange (SGX) for a listing on the Catalist board, according to an announcement on Friday. The European social-trading broker becomes the first fintech enterprise to list on the Catalist growth board. (Deal Street Asia)

Singapore: US-listed business process outsourcing service provider StarTek, Inc is merging with Singapore-headquartered Capital Square Partners-owned BPO Aegis Ltd in an all-stock deal, according to a press release. (Deal Street Asia)

Indonesia: Listed multifinance company Danasupra Erapacific (Danapac) announced that it is in the process of acquiring P2P lending startup Digital Tunai Kita from JAS Kapital and Kresna Usaha Kreatif, a subsidiary of investment firm Kresna Graha Investama.

The Philippines: Philippine unicorn Revolution Precrafted has entered into a dealership agreement with Yangon-based KT Group to manufacture and supply prefabricated homes for the property market in Myanmar, the company announced on March 14. (Deal Street Asia)

Thailand: Red Planet Japan Inc., the Tokyo Stock Exchange listed subsidiary of Bangkok’s Red Planet Hotels, Friday announced a $111 million (JPY 11.77 billion) sale-and-leaseback transaction with global investment bank Goldman Sachs. (Deal Street Asia)

Vietnam: Dragon Capital, a Vietnam-focused group of investment funds, has purchased 15.3 million shares of Saigon Beer Alcohol and Beverage Corp (Sabeco) from Singapore-based Nogard Pte. Ltd, according to Vietnam Securities Depository (VSD). (Deal Street Asia)

Malaysia: Malaysia’s sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Bhd has announced changes to its senior management team in China and North Asia, which also includes Korea and Japan. (Deal Street Asia)

China:

KrASIA Daily: World's 3rd-largest Cryptocurrency Exchange Huobi to Incubate Blockchain Startups Worldwide
Image credit to 123rf.com.cn

Huobi, the world’s third-largest cryptocurrency exchange, has announced a partnership deal with DigitalX100, a Washington D.C.-based blockchain incubator to support start-ups worldwide.  (China Money Network)

JD.com establishes “Excellent Customer Experience” department to improve the shopping experience. YU Rui, VP of JD.com, is named the head of the new department. Writer LIU Liu previously alleged JD.com for selling counterfeit products. (36Kr)

Tencent Video announced it has 62.59 million paid members as of February 28 and it is the #1 video-streaming platform in China. (36Kr)

Regulators in Shenzhen alleged Didi Chuxing to recall 20k bikes of its self-owned bike-sharing brand Qingju, as the local government hasn’t approved the company’s application to put these bikes in the city. (36Kr)

Baidu reached a partnership with state-owned electronics company Great Wall to build an AI platform. (36Kr)

The use of Chinese Depository Receipt (CDR) is likely to be limited to fundraisings in China. Chinese government seeks to relist overseas-listed companies in China through financial certificates. (Yicai)

Coocaa, the Smart TV Unit of Shenzhen-based consumer electronics manufacturer Skyworth, has inked a deal with Baidu which will invest RMB 1.1 billion into the company, The Paper reports. (Technode)

Shenzhen Stock Exchange-listed BOE Technology, a screen and smart system provider, acquired SES-imagotag, a provider of electronic shelf labeling solutions and digital price tags. (Techweb)

CEO of Volkswagen China apologized for the problem of air filters in its Touareg cars. (36Kr)

Chairman of the board of automaker Geely said the company has no plan to continue acquiring other companies. (36Kr)

World:

 Image credit to Ola. Protesting against a sharp fall in income, strict regulation for compromising user experience and long working hours, taxi drivers of app-based ride-hailing majors, Ola and Uber, will be going on a strike on Monday i.e. March 19, 2018.
Image credit to Ola.

Protesting against a sharp fall in income, strict regulation for compromising user experience and long working hours, taxi drivers of app-based ride-hailing majors, Ola and Uber, will be going on a strike on Monday i.e. March 19, 2018. (inc42)

Online grocer Grofers is raising a Rs 400-crore ($62 million) funding round led by existing investor SoftBank, which is looking to increase its shareholding to 35-40 percent in the Indian company, according to a Times of India report. (Deal Street Asia)

Walmart Inc. is in discussions to spend about $7 billion to become the largest investor in India’s leading e-commerce company, according to people familiar with the matter, a move that would put the U.S. retailer in competition with Amazon.com Inc. in one of the most promising online retail markets. (Deal Street Asia)

Large digital companies operating in the European Union, such as Alphabet Inc. or Twitter Inc., could face a 3 percent tax on their gross revenues based on where their users are located, according to a draft proposal by the European Commission. (Bloomberg)

Qualcomm Inc. said director Paul Jacobs, son of the chipmaker’s founder and a former chief executive officer, will leave the board after he decided to explore an acquisition of the company. (Bloomberg)

Apple‘s projected 2018 R&D costs of ~$14B, up nearly 2x in 4 years and at a 14-year high as a percentage of revenue, hint at Apple’s growing product ambitions. (Techmeme)