Today’s Tech Headlines: China’s major telcos collaborate to form blockchain research group

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

Image Credit To Unsplash.

SEA

Jungle Ventures-backed TradeGecko gobbles up $10m Series B. TradeGecko is Singapore-based software-as-a-service startup who will be using the latest funds raised to grow its product suites. (Deal Street Asia)

Carro’s COO on leaving Uber and his outlook SEA’s ride-sharing space. Carro is a used car marketplace based out of Singapore. Vidit Agrawal, the COO of Carro, is focused on pushing the company’s growth in its international markets. (Tech In Asia)

Singapore VC Amasia joins $28m Series C round for Skillshare, a New York-headquartered online learning portal. Founded in 2010, Skillshare offers thousands of online classes in design, business, technology and more. (Deal Street Asia)  

Thai-listed logistics firm Begistics invests in startup Sokochan. The firm will use the new funds to expand its services outside of Thailand. It intends to be operational in Malaysia by October 2018. (KrASIA)

Grab picks up stake in grocery delivery partner HappyFresh. Groceries accounted for the largest category of household expenditure in Southeast Asia. No financial terms of the partnership were made available at that time. (Deal Street Asia)

 

China

Alibaba’s Ele.me goes on a 3 billion yuan summer spending spree to fight competition. Alibaba is beefing up Ele.me’s war chest even as Meituan-Dianping heads for an imminent IPO. (Reuters)

Alibaba and Tencent vie for a 20% stake in WPP’s Chinese unit. This potential deal could take months to conclude and is valued between $2 billion to $2.5 billion. London-based WPP is likely to retain majority ownership if the deal were to go through. (KrASIA)

Alibaba joining $600m investment in Megvii, maker of Face++. The Chinese e-commerce giant is making further inroads into artificial intelligence with another investment in Chinese facial recognition technology firm Megvii. (KrASIA)

CEOs of IPO-bound Chinese startups are starting to get billion-dollar bonuses. Chief executive officers are beginning to get ten-figure bonuses with their initial public offerings. Lei Jun, the head of Beijing-based smartphone maker Xiaomi Corp, saw a $1.5 billion payday, with no strings attached, when his company went public in July. (Deal Street Asia)

China Mobile, China Unicom & China Telecom join forces to form blockchain research group. The objective is to look into blockchain and its applications into the telecommunications industry such as contract management, public-key infrastructure, order management and user data management among other topics, according to the report. (KrASIA)

China Creation Ventures raises $200m fund targeting China’s TMT space. This latest development brings CCV’s total funds raised close to RMB 3b, inclusive of one RMB fund and two USD funds. (KrASIA)

 

Rest of Asia

Japan Foodie raises $9.2m to help foreign investors connect with more local attractions. This follows a pre-Series A round where the firm fundraised 130 million yen ($1.2m). This company’s mobile app basically provides three main functions namely media, reservations and mobile payments. (The Bridge)

World

Alphabet trounces profit estimates Google reins in costs. Expenses from its Google search engines grew more slowly in the second quarter, while revenues rose more steeply, boosting its profits. (Reuters)

Google Cloud’s partnership network begins paying dividends. This partnership network plan began when the company brought Diane Greene on board at the end of 2015. Google is now partnering with a variety of large enterprise vendors from Cisco to NetApp to VMware – Diane Greene’s old company. (TechCrunch)

‘Poor Strategies’ have been holding back bike sharing, expert says. Mistakes in predicting regulations, poor consumer behaviors, and a lack of brand loyalty could make bike-sharing less profitable for companies.  (CNBC)

On WhatsApp, fake news is fast – and can be fatal. At least 2 dozen people have been killed in mob lynchings in India since the start of the year. WhatsApp, with 1.5 billion users, can allow information to go viral in minutes as individuals forward messages to their friends or groups, without any way to determine its origin. (SCMP)

Google joins the race to $1 trillion. From falling short of Apple, Google is now jumping into that batch of companies that are on their way to becoming a $1 trillion company. The parent company of Google – Alphabet, substantially outperformed the market expectations in its second quarter. (TechCrunch)

Pinterest nears $1b in ad sales and valuation rises as it looks to go public in mid-2019. In targeting a public market debut in the second quarter of 2019, the firm could join a group of high-valued and high-profile consumer startups that are aiming to hit the market around the same time. (CNBC)

Gadgets

Microsoft is building low-cost streaming-only Xbox. The company is reported to be building a cloud gaming system. The streaming Xbox is likely to become available at a much lower cost than the traditional Xbox. (TechCrunch)

Apple’s iPhones trail Samsung, Google devices in internet speeds. Faster internet data means that users can load websites and start watching movies more quickly, make crispier video calls and get higher-quality videos. Data from Oakla LLC revealed that Apple’s iPhone 8, 8 Plus & X trail the latest smartphones from Samsung. (Bloomberg)

 

Good News Bad News

Will decentralized exchanges be the next generation of crypto exchanges? As of March this year, more than US$15b worth of bitcoins have been stolen from exchanges. Centralized exchanges have been facing the heat from leaders in the crypto field. (Tech In Asia)