Sunday, 2024 May 26

Today’s Tech Headlines: Tencent breaks record while SoftBank sits in Grab’s front seat

The Essentials

Tencent’s big defeat

Despite a consecutive 21 trading days stock repurchase, Chinese tech darling – at least one was – Tencent is still breaking records by losing more market value than any other companies worldwide.

The company, which operates China’s hyper-popular super app WeChat, is no longer the world’s top ten companies after wiping off US$220 billion in market value as its shares have dropped more than 38% from its January high in recent trading days.

The market sentiments revolved around its profit decreases – first in at least one decade – in games as the business would potentially hit Beijing’s regulatory clampdown. More here.

SoftBank and Grab’s “unicorn farm”

SoftBank is launching its Vision Fund’s portfolios companies into Southeast Asia by way of Grab’s Grab Ventures, says Grab president Ming Maa.

Ming told the audience at South China Morning Post’s China Conference held in Kuala Lumpur that the move was part of the core strategy with SoftBank to create a “unicorn farm”  to bring Vision Fund-backed unicorns to the region through Grab’s platforms, and there will be an explosion of such partnerships in the next 12 to 24 months.

Ming joined Grab from SoftBank in October 2016 heads corporate development including strategic partnerships and investment opportunities. SoftBank also backs Grab since its first investment of US$250 million in 2014 and was reportedly chipping in another $500 million in Grab’s incoming new round. More here.

SEA and Beyond

New Fundings

GoWork, an Indonesian co-working space raises $10 million from Gobi Partners and Paradise Group, more here.

TabSquare, a restaurant tech startup raises US$10 million in Series led by with participation from Coca-Cola Amatil (a Coca-Cola bottler), Resorts World and existing investor Walden International.

Wallex, a Singapore cross-border payments startup, raises Pre-A round from BEENEXT with participation from Central Capital Ventura and Indonusa Dwitama, more here.

Market Moves

Venuerific, a Singapore-based event spaces finder, acquires local wedding venue marketplace Wedever for an undisclosed amount in its regional expansion push. Venuerific is Asia’s largest event venue online marketplace, more here.

U.S. mobile payment startup Stripe looks at Southeast Asian expansion after its last US$245 million funding, more here.

China Decipherer

Haoqipei (好汽配), a Chinese auto parts B2B marketplace raises tens of millions of Series B led by DCM and Yuri Milner with participation from SIG, XVC, and Redpoint Capital, more here.

Xiaozhu, a Chinese home-sharing platform, raises US$300 million from Jack Ma’s Yunfeng Capital and Advantech Capital with participation from Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC, Joy Capital, Morningside Venture Capital and Capital Today, more here.

Meicai, a Chinese veggie-selling startup, raises around US$600 million from Tiger Global and Hillhouse Capital, more here.

Mobike sues Didi over alleged patent infringement – from smart locks to adjustable seats – and seeks US$1.2 million in damages, more here. poaches at least five execs from convenience store giant 7-11’s Beijing office for its very own convenience store business, Richard Liu, JD founder and CEO announced in early 2017 that his firm would open up shop 1 million convenience stores in China with half of which located in rural areas, more here (link in Chinese).


Chinese smart scooter startup Niu, which is the country’s largest producer of lithium-ion e-scooters, aims to raise $95 million in upcoming US IPO, more here.



The world’s top 20 AI employer spends US$650 million annually on AI talents, more here.

The world just had its first diagnosed Netflix addict, case in point to prove that Netflix is infectious and addictive, more here.

Before you go

An interesting question to ask the startup community, are we underestimating Malaysia’s technology and startup ecosystem? More here.


Correction: An earlier version of the story incorrectly stated that SoftBank and Grab are working together to bring SoftBank unicorns into the region through a tie-up, a Grab spokesperson told us that there is no official tie-up in this regard.


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