China Digest: CDH invests in AI startup ForwardX; Foxconn backs IoT startup Youdian’s $22m round

Photo: ForwardX Facebook page

Beijing-headquartered ForwardX has secured $10 million in its Series A round while internet of things (IoT) startup Youdian Technology has raised $22 million.

AI startup ForwardX raises $10m in Series A

Beijing-based autonomous luggage maker ForwardX has announced that it has raised $10 million in its Series A round to bring its self-driving suitcase Ovis to the market.

The latest round was co-led by CDH Investments and Eastern Bell Venture Capital. According to Crunchbase, it had last raised $1 million in an angel round in December 2016.

Founded in 2016 by former Oracle exec Nicholas Chee, the startup already provides a self-driving factory flatbed truck currently in use at some warehouses of JD.com, according to a Forbes report.

is also exploring the creation of mobility machines for last-mile deliveries. It is also in talks with e-commerce players like JD.com and DHL to make robots carrying items and following factory workers. ForwardX also has an office in San Jose.

Smart luggage startups such as Raden and Bluesmart have recently had to shut shop, citing stricter airline regulations on batteries in luggage. Ovis from ForwardX comes with a removable battery, making it thus far compliant with regulation.

Youdian Technology raises $22 million in Series A round

Internet of Things (IoT) startup Youdian Technology has closed a $22-million Series A round led by Northern Light Venture Capital.

The round was joined by Taiwanese electronics giant Foxconn Technology Group, according to a report by Tencent Yixian.

The latest funding round brings the startup’s valuation to over $109 million, it added.

The Shenzhen-based startup was founded by a former Huawei executive and focuses mainly on the research and development of IoT-enabled smart home products, with smart door locks and security devices as its flagship products.

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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.