Temasek leads $77m Series C round for Chinese SaaS startup Black Lake

Source: Black Lake Technologies

Black Lake Technologies, a Chinese Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) startup that develops data-driven collaboration solutions for the manufacturing industry, has raised nearly 500 million yuan ($77.1 million) in a Series C round of financing led by Singapore state investor Temasek.

All of Black Lake’s existing shareholders, including China Renaissance’s Huaxing Growth Capital, Lightspeed China Partners, GSR Ventures, BAI Capital, GGV Capital, and ZhenFund, participated in the round.

Chinese investment bank Taihecap served as the exclusive financial advisor for the deal.

Founded in 2016, Black Lake specialises in the development of a one-stop, data-driven collaboration platform for factory workers to log their daily tasks and managers to oversee the plant floor.

Its solutions and products digitise data generated in all stages of production, covering client orders, material procurement, quality compliance, warehouse management, logistics, shipment, and beyond. Based on these data, the software then produces reports to help factory managers enhance efficiency, as well as increase output and income.

Since the introduction of its SaaS product in October 2018, Black Lake has served nearly 2,000 medium- and large-sized manufacturers and suppliers across Greater China and Southeast Asia, such as Tesla, Audi, Belgium-based beverages maker AB InBev, L’Oréal, smartphone brand Xiaomi, Chinese oil & gas enterprise Sinopec, and Chinese state-owned conglomerate China Resources’ pharmaceutical group.

It claims to have reached 500,000 production workers across nearly 20 segments to date, according to its website.

In a statement, Black Lake said that it has simplified user experience to make it “as easy as building Lego blocks.” Factory workers and managers can master the usage of its software within one week, and fully deploy it for daily use in around four to six weeks.

Since the founding team wrote its first line of code in a factory in eastern China’s Suzhou City, Black Lake has come a long way to become “a prior choice for Chinese factories taking on their digitalisation endeavour,” said Black Lake’s founder and CEO Zhou Yuxiang.

With the new financing, Black Lake will further strengthen its technologies and innovations with an aim to “accelerate the digital transformation for manufacturing in China and the Asia Pacific region,” said Zhou.

By far, Shanghai-based Black Lake has gathered approximately 800 million yuan ($123.8 million) from five investments. Prior to the latest round, Black Lake had closed a 150 million yuan Series B round in 2019. The startup raised 50 million yuan in a Series A round in 2018, after the completion of its Series Pre-A round at “tens of millions of yuan” in 2017. In its initial round, the firm had secured millions of yuan in an angel round in 2016.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.