TECHINASIA: Nearex, a mobile payments startup based in Singapore, yesterday announced it raised funds in a series B round led by Tata Capital Growth Fund. After it has gained traction across Africa, the startup is aiming to expand to other emerging markets.
TECHINASIA: Alibaba’s spin-off finance subsidiary, Ant Financial, today put out a major new update to its Alipay mobile wallet app. For the first time, the mobile wallet now has ecommerce merchants and shopping baked right into the app. It means that within Alipay, which is China’s top mobile wallet service with over 400 million annual active users, people can now find local services like fresh flowers or food delivery – and then pay for it all in the same app. As in Alibaba’s other marketplaces, all the things are from third-party sellers.
TECHCRUNCH: In a move that feels fairly unusual, Global Founders Capital (GFC), the venture capital arm of German startup factory and e-commerce behemoth Rocket Internet, has invested in a startup before it’s even launched. The company in question is BrickVest, a London and Berlin-based real estate investment platform founded by Emmanuel Lumineau, Thomas Schneider, and Adalbert Wysocki, who have a background in investment banking, real estate and fintech. It’s launch is pegged for Q3 2015, but interested parties can sign up for pre-registration now with the promise to be able to get in on the action early once the first real estate is listed on the site.
THE ECONOMIST: China is certainly not the first country to try to prop up a falling stockmarket. The central banks of America, Europe and Japan have all shown form in buying shares after crashes and cutting interest rates to cheer up bloodied investors. But the circumstances and the manner of China’s intervention of the past ten days make it an outlier, worryingly so.
TECHCRUNCH: Lendingkart, a New Delhi-based platform for small businesses loans, has raised a Series A of $10 million from Saama Capital, Mayfield Fund, Shailesh Mehta, and Ashvin Chadha. Since launching a year ago, Lendingkart has processed loans from 50 cities and 17 states across India. It will use its new capital to expand into all towns and cities in India, improve its credit scoring technology, and hire more employees.
FORBES: China’s Alibaba Group is deepening ties with Singapore’s national postal service provider SingPost, as the e-commerce titan seeks to grow its international businesses. Alibaba, which last year invested $249 million for a 10.35% stake in Singapore Post Ltd, has agreed to spend another $138.6 million to acquire an additional 5% stake. The company will hold 14.51% of SingPost upon completion of the deal, which is subject to the approval of SingPost shareholders and Singaporean authorities, Alibaba announced in a statement today
E27.CO: Philippines-based fin-tech startup LoanSolutions has raised an undisclosed round of funding from a group of international investors led by KK Fund, with participation from other venture capitalist funds and angel investors, including Kickstart Ventures and John Dang, CEO of Zipmatch. (more…)
TechCrunch: It was the big story not so long ago. As of mid-June, 14 U.S.-traded China-based companies had received buyout offers valued at a collective $22.4 billion, according to Dealogic. The highest profile of the bunch was Internet services provider Qihoo 360, which, several weeks ago, announced it had received a buyout offer led by its chairman and CEO — one that would make it the “largest take-private deal of a U.S.-listed company,” said the WSJ. (more…)
TECHINASIA: Vladislav Solodkiy, Life.SREDA VC: It has been almost 2 months since I relocated to Singapore. During this time I saw about 100 fintech projects at different stages. My last article was dedicated to 5 most promising mPOS-acquiring startups, and now I’d like to introduce 15 more projects. (more…)
E27.CO: incub@TE, an incubator run by Tata Elxsi (part of the US$100 billion Tata Group), was launched in 2012 to nurture and support products- and service-oriented startups. This Bangalore-based incubator has now partnered with Get2Volume and AISB Holdings to provide cross-border programmes to early-stage ventures. Unlike other incubators, incub@TE forms a rather long-term association with its incubatees. e27 spoke to Rajesh Kumar, Vice President (Strategic Initiatives) at Tata Elxsi, to know more about the incubator. Read the full article
E27.CO: The Indian e-commerce market has found a new superhero — cashback. Move over discounts, cashback is the hottest new trend in business. Cashback is the newest trend to rock the entire Indian e-commerce game. Big players, emerging players, almost everybody in the e-commerce niche is embracing cashback culture, compelled by thick audience demand, surging market competition and latest funding rounds. It remains to be seen if the new fad stays strong in the long run or fizzes out in an industry that has been enveloped with deep discounting since its inception. Read the full article
TechInAsia: Indian women online shoppers in the age bracket of 18-24 are the most active and comprise of 52 % as compared to 20 percent between the age group of 25-34, 6% above the age of 34 and 2% less than the age of 18 years. On an average, most of the women prefer shopping online between 9 – 11 pm that too on Mondays and Fridays. Also, 80% women prefer Cash on Delivery payment option while only 20% opt for online transactions, said the survey. Read the full article
India will pass U.S. to become world’s second largest smartphone market by 2017: VentureBeat
India Now Uber’s Second Largest Market Following Expansion To 7 New Cities: TechCrunch
TechCrunch: BankBazaar, a startup that lets Indian consumers compare financial products online, has scored a $60 million Series C led by Amazon, with participation from Fidelity Growth Partners, Mousse Partners, and returning investors Sequoia Capital and Walden International. The platform aggregates information about online loans, credit cards, and fixed deposits from 23 financial institutions, which users can research and then apply for using its site or Android and iOS apps. BankBazaar says it gets four million unique visitors each month. For Amazon, its investment represents a chance to take a larger stake in the personal finance market. Read the full article
Read more on the topic: TechInAsia
E27.CO: GrabTaxi from Singapore is about to get US$200 million in fresh capital, pegging its valuation at US$1.5 billion. It quotes “a person familiar with the situation”, who has shared that the round is being led by US hedge fund Coatue Management LLC. The source also mentioned that existing investors SoftBank and Tiger Global Managementare also going to participate in the round. GrabTaxi’s last funding, a then record-breaking US$250 million round, happened just seven months ago in December 2014. Read the full article (more…)
Bloomberg: As more Chinese jumped into the market in the hope of instant wealth, peer-to-peer websites offering loans for stock investing have mushroomed. They are among a multitude of sources of leverage outside of traditional margin financing that threaten to complicate any efforts to prevent an unruly reversal of China’s stock market boom, which is already faltering. (more…)
TechInAsia: Mobile payment methods like Alibaba’s Alipay and Tencent’s Tenpay account for a huge portion of China’s online transactions. But do these new payment methods have the same kind of traction on offline shops and restaurants? Chinese tech news site Techweb recently conducted a survey of 1,607 businesses on a busy pedestrian street in Wuhan to find out. (more…)
E27.CO: South Korean restaurant discovery app MangoPlate has announced today that it has secured US$6.1 million from venture investment group of Qualcomm Incorporated, Qualcomm Ventures, as well as SoftBank Ventures Korea and YJ Capital, a venture capital firm established by Yahoo!JAPAN. This marks YJ Capital’s first investment in a Korean company. (more…)
TECHINASIA: It’s easy to spot the rapidly rising number of hotels and restaurants in Vietnam. But despite the industry’s noticeable growth, managing a hotel or chain restaurant still takes a lot of work and innovation. That’s where Hottab comes in. It’s a new Vietnamese startup that offers a new solution for point-of-sale (POS) management for F&B business. Hottab provides service tablets and a POS system for food and beverage (F&B) businesses. A cloud-based system connects all devices using Hottab. It includes an application installed on tablet devices that allows waiters to create new orders. It also enables customers to self-order at the table. (more…)