Today’s Tech Headlines: Ant Financial raises $14 billion; Pinduoduo launches a clean-up campaign

All you need to know about what happened in the tech world today.

By

Today’s Tech Headlines: Ant Financial raises $14 billion; Pinduoduo launches a clean-up campaign

SEA

Southeast Asia’s ride-hailing giant revealed its annual revenue for the first time. “Grab is the first transportation tech company in Southeast Asia to cross US$1 billion annual revenue,” Grab President Ming Maa said in an interview with Chinese news service Yicai. At the same time, Maa told Yicai that the company doesn’t have a plan to break even now. (KrASIA)

Indonesia’s on-demand services platform, Go-Jek reportedly has been offered a minimum of $1 billion additional funding from existing investors, as the regional unicorn locks horns with Grab in an increasingly heated land grab across the region of Southeast Asia. (KrASIA)

Patamar Capital has invested an undisclosed amount in Vietnam’s ‘Uber for maids’ Jupviec which intends to use the funding to expand the model to other provinces. (Deal Street Asia)

Hong Kong-based logistics startup Lalamove offers same-day last-mile delivery services for SMEs to reach their customers. It targets motorbike riders to help them earn extra income and are given training prior to commencing operations. (e27)

Blockchain games publisher EON Foundation has raised a US$5million seed funding round led by Cherubic Ventures, UpHonest Capital partner Wei Guo, and Feng Li, an early investor in Ripple and Coinbase. The funding will increase its efforts to disrupt traditional game development by leveraging on blockchain and cryptocurrency. (Deal Street Asia)

Acceler8 by UnionSPACE and fintech company SCI today announced the launch of Blockchain Space in the Philippines in hopes to bring together fintech companies through collaborative events across Southeast Asia. (e27)

GetDoc, a Singapore- and Malaysia-based online doctor appointment scheduling and healthcare news platform, has received US$1.6 million pre-Series A funding, led by startup’s adviser Alan Wong, for product development and to expand operations to Thailand.  (e27)

Cookly, a Bangkok-based cooking classes and culinary experiences platform, had announced today it has raised an undisclosed pre-Series A funding round, to support global expansion and scalability and product development, led by founder of leading cryptocurrency Zcoin. (e27)

 

China

Ant Financial announced Friday that it has raised approximately US$14 billion from investors via a Series C equity financing round. Ant Financial said in a statement that the fresh capital will be used to prop up Alipay’s overseas expansion and invest in developing technologies as the company is expanding its services to Southeast Asian countries where some of the population are unbanked and underbanked. (KrASIA)

Tencent-backed Douyu, China’s largest game-streaming platform by DAU, is planning a US$700 million HK IPO in Q3 this year, according to a report by South China Morning Post, becoming the second Chinese game-streaming company to go public, after Huya. (KrASIA)

Ofo has launched a warehouse sale of its bikes to downsize its operation in Singapore, showing that Ofo’s cash crunch is affecting its global expansion. (Technode)

Foxconn Industrial Internet Co Ltd, a multinational electronics contract manufacturer, saw its share prices surge to the maximum daily limit of 44% on Friday, the day it listed on the Shanghai stock market. (Reuters)

Xiaomi is one step closer to the planned listing on the HKEX by mid-July after passing a listing hearing which is a comprehensive assessment conducted on companies wanting to list. Xiaomi has filed a China Depository Receipt listing with the Chinese Securities Regulatory Commission, according to reports. (GizChina)

Pinduoduo has launched a clean-up campaign to remove products that are related to violence or pornography which includes lethal knives, pseudo base stations, erotic games, and sex dolls that were on sale on its platform. (Technode)

Chinese co-working space operator Nashwork has raised RMB500 million (US$78 million) in a series B+ round led by Sino-Ocean Capital. (CMN)

Chinese blockchain media start-up Mars Finance has raised a Series A+ round financing, according to WANG Feng, founder of the startup. The round was led by Ceyuan Ventures and Huobi Global Ecosystem Fund. Mars Finance is valued at RMB330 million (US$51.5 million) after the found. (CMN)

Baidu is launching a blockchain game, dubbed Du Yuzhou, meaning “The Universe”. The game represents a blockchain-powered space journey where users would could build their own planet by participating in the blockchain. (Coindesk)

Though M17 Entertainment, a merger between dating app Paktor and live-streaming business 17 Media, had priced its IPO this morning with trading expected to open today, it is still not trading, without reason so far. (Techcrunch)

 

World

Israel-based ride-hailing firm Gett has raised US$80 million from Volkswagen, among others. CEO and founder Dave Waiser foresees profitability across all countries where Gett operates, excluding research and development costs, by Q1 2019. (Reuters)

Alphabet Inc’s self-driving unit Waymo next step after it launches its robo-taxi service in the United States later this year is to launch in Europe. Chief Executive John Krafcik sees Europe as a place to experiment different products and go-to-market strategies. (Reuters)

 

Gadgets

China’s electronics maker TCL launched in the US a smartphone that it developed with BlackBerry, touting security and privacy features to distinguish it from other smartphones. (Reuters)

 

Good News Bad News

ZTE Corp. will be able to kick-start its operations as per a deal reached between U.S. and China. The deal requires ZTE to pay a US$ 1 billion fine and allow having its actions monitored by U.S. enforcement officers, in exchange ZTE will be able to once again buy components from U.S. suppliers. (WSJ)