Today’s Tech Headlines: Grab’s second merger fine and Indonesia’s last mile logistics

And Jack Ma doesn’t hire people who asks him what to do.

The Essentials

Last mile logistics in Indonesia

While last mile delivery could be a bit tricky in archipelagic Indonesia. The advent of e-commerce and local consumers’ online shopping fervour, though made the business even more problematic, also created some new business opportunities in the vertical, we recently had a chat with two leading local logistics startup founder to understand what is it like to run a logistics startup in the country, more here.

SEA and Beyond

Singapore NetsPay users could soon make mobile payments in mainland China, Nets is reportedly in talks with Tencent’s WeChat on a cross-border payment tie-up, more here.

Singapore eyes new talents and a US$19 billion R&D strategy to adjust to demographic changes that are shaping the Asian economies, the city-state’s five-year Research, Innovation and Enterprise 2020 Plan will cover areas from advanced manufacturing and engineering to health and biomedical sciences, more here.

Grab and Uber fined by the Philippines’ watchdog for a rushed merger and drop in service quality, the two companies were fined by Singapore’s competition agency on account of a similar reason, more here.

China Decipherer

Fundings

Bianlifeng (便利蜂), a convenience store chain startup, raises a rumoured US$256 million from Tencent and Hillhouse at a US1.6 billion valuation, more here (link in Chinese).

Lumi United, a smart home appliances maker and Xiaomi ecosystem company, receives undisclosed amount strategic investment from SEB Alliance, more here (link in Chinese).

Funds

GGV Capital closes US$1.88 billion for new funds, backers include CalSTRS, Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund, Rockefeller Foundation and University of Texas Investment Management Company, more here.

FutureCap closes a US$100 million fund, also its third USD fund, more here (link in Chinese).

Market Moves

UCommune, a co-working space operator, acquires local rival Fountown, the 7th of such acquisitions this year, more here.

Diagram

Image credit: CB Insights.

Opinion

What could Southeast Asia learn from China about AI? From a focus on practical use scenarios, to improved data access, aggressive AI adoption and competition, to govt support, more here.

Voices

Jack Ma, Alibaba co-founder and chairman:

I don’t hire people who asks me what to do.

Before you go

Beijing is steadily pushing towards its Greater Bay Area plan with big expectation. How would Hong Kong, a city heavily relies on finance and real estate and consistently rejects sharing economy like Uber and Airbnb and bans electric bikes, fit into the grand plan? More here.