China Digest: Sequoia leads Tezign’s Series C1; Soocas raises $25m

Chinese tech-enabled creative marketing content provider Tezign has raised tens of millions of U.S. dollars in a Series C1 round of financing led by Sequoia Capital China, while electric toothbrush brand Soocas has closed 175 million yuan ($25 million) in a Series pre-IPO round of financing.

Sequoia China leads Series C1 round in Tezign

Tezign, a Chinese startup that offers creative marketing content and solutions, has raised tens of millions of U.S. dollars in a Series C1 round of financing led by Sequoia Capital China, the firm announced in a WeChat post on Monday.

The startup said that the new financing was completed by the end of 2019. All its former investors re-upped in the Series C1 round.

These investors included Hearst Ventures, the venture capital platform of America’s media and publishing giant Hearst Corporation, Chinese early-stage VC Eminence Ventures, US and China-focused angel fund Cherubic Ventures, as well as frontier tech-focused Linear Venture, among others.

Shanghai-based Tezign serves about 8,000 medium and large-sized enterprises, such as Alibaba and its fintech arm Ant Group, Tencent, British-Dutch consumer goods firm Unilever, Chinese dairy products maker Mengniu Dairy, and Nestlé.

Previously, Tezign closed nearly $10 million in a Series B round led by Hearst Ventures in April 2018. Sequoia Capital China, Linear Venture, Eminence Ventures, Nautica founder’s David Chu, as well as Skip Battle, a member of the Board of Directors at companies including LinkedIn and Netflix, participated in the deal.

Sequoia Capital China also led its Series A round in May 2016, in which the startup raised tens of millions of yuan. Its $1.1-million angel round was completed in 2015.

Xiaomi-backed Soocas raises $25m fresh funds

Soocas, which produces electric toothbrushes and other personal care-related home appliances, has closed 175 million yuan ($25 million) in a Series Pre-IPO round to enhance its technological infrastructure and marketing capabilities.

The investment was led by Grand Flight Investment, an industry investment fund initiated by the Chinese financial services group Far East Horizon, with participation from existing shareholders, said the lead investor in a WeChat post on Monday.

Soocas develops small home appliances used for personal healthcare purposes, such as electric and ultrasonic toothbrushes, electric hair driers, electric razors and oral irrigator – a market that is still dominated by foreign players like Philips and P&G in China.

Meng Fandi, founder of Soocas

“Foreign brands have been having a dominant share in China’s several-billion-yuan small home appliance market since the 1990s. But it is definite that imported products will be replaced [by domestic offerings] – a trend that was already proved in the fields of consumer electronics like smartphones and laptops,” said Yang Jun, founding partner of Grand Flight Investment, in the post.

The company secured 200 million yuan ($29 million) in a Series C round led by Vision Knight Capital, a fund created by former Alibaba CEO David Wei Zhe.

Chinese VC Kinzon Capital, Shanghai-based asset manager Greenwoods Investment, investment firm Orchid Asia Group, and China’s Yunmu Capital participated in the previous round.

Shunwei Capital first invested in Soocas by leading its Series Pre-A round in July 2016. Shunwei continued to back its Series A and B rounds in 2017 and 2018, respectively.

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.