China Digest: Smart trucks JV formed; BitKan, Ainemo raise funds

Photo: Reuters

In multiple developments in China, three firms have teamed up to form a joint venture that will develop smart trucks while startups BitKan and Ainemo have raised millions of dollars in their latest funding rounds.

GLP teams up with G7, NIO Capital for smart trucks JV

Industrial logistics provider GLP has teamed up with Chinese Internet-of-Things firm G7 and NIO Capital to form a technology joint venture company that will develop smart trucks, according to a G7 statement.

The joint venture aims to create the next generation of smart vehicles for logistics and transportation through cross-industry collaboration, building on G7’s real-time data and fleet management capabilities, GLP’s open logistics ecosystem, and NIO Capital’s automotive industry partnership.

NIO Capital is a private equity fund backed by NIO, a Chinese electric vehicle maker. The fund focuses on investment in the new energy vehicle industry chain.

“Focusing on logistics and road transportation scenarios, the JV is committed to delivering breakthroughs in autonomous driving, new energy technologies and logistics efficiency to meet and exceed customers’ expectations,” G7 said in a statement.

Cryptocurrency services firm BitKan raises $10m in Series B

BitKan, one of China’s bitcoin and cryptocurrency data sites, has raised $10 million in Series B funding round led by Zhongyunhui Capital and backed by IDG Capital, the company said in a statement Wednesday.

The latest investments will be used to finance the development, promotion, and operation of BitKan’s newly launched social network hub K Site as well as related products and services, said the startup’s CEO Yu Fang.

“The investment will also speed up the company’s international expansion by extending BitKan’s user base broad,” according to Yu. This infusion follows a $2.4-million Series A funding in 2016 and a $300,000 angel round in 2015.

Launched in 2014, BitKan claims to have more than 1 million registered users globally, 40 per cent of whom are outside China. The company was valued at $100 million at the beginning of the year, compared to $16 million in 2016.

Baidu leads Series C funding round in home robot maker Ainemo

China’s leading search engine Baidu has led the Series C funding round in Ainemo, a smart home robot maker, which raised tens of millions of dollars, according to a China Money Network report.

The funding round, which was also joined by Foxconn Technology Group, adds to the over $30 million that Ainemo raised from its Series A, B and B+ rounds of investments.

Founded in 2014 in Beijing, Ainemo is a technology-driven consumer electronics company that makes home robots powered by artificial intelligence.

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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.