China Digest: Cloudwise nets $24m; North Summit leads $5m round in Lingumi

Toby Mather, CEO of Lingumi, with some Lingumi learners at a family event in Taipei. Source: Visuals from his Medium post

Chinese corporate digital solutions provider Cloudwise has secured $24 million in a Series D+ round, while North Summit Capital, founded by former Alibaba Cloud chief scientist Min Wanli, has led a £4 million ($5 million) Series A round in London-based edtech platform Lingumi.

Digital solutions provider Cloudwise closes $24m Series D round

Cloudwise, a Chinese company providing digital solutions to enterprises, has secured $24 million in a Series D+ round of financing led by Greater China-focused investment firm Everest Venture Capital.

Sequoia Capital China, growth-stage venture fund WestSummit Capital, ASG, and Lakala Koala Fund, which is backed by China-based financial services platform Lakala Payment, also participated in the round, according to a statement on Friday.

The Series D+ round brought the total capital raised by Cloudwise to over $100 million. The new funding will help the company strengthen its capabilities in independent R&D and product delivery and develop its intelligent operation and maintenance offerings.

“Intelligent business operation and maintenance is a key technology supporting the high efficacy of digitized corporate operations, application systems, and infrastructures,” said the company founder and CEO Yin Jin in the statement. “In the past four years, Cloudwise has helped partners in areas like finance, energy, advanced manufacturing, and transportation go digital.”

The company claims to have retained an annual revenue growth of over 100 per cent in the previous three years.

Cloudwise raised $25 million in a Series D round led by WestSummit Capital in June 2019. It also closed $26 million in a Series C round led by TMT-focused private equity fund CBC Capital in 2017.

Gobi Partners, which invests across Greater China and the ASEAN, was one of the earliest investors in Cloudwise.

North Summit Capital leads $5m Series A round in Lingumi

North Summit Capital, a Chinese investment firm led by former Alibaba Cloud chief scientist Min Wanli, has led a £4 million ($5 million) Series A round of financing in pre-school education technology platform Lingumi.

Existing investors, including London-based seed-stage venture fund LocalGlobe, ADV, and Greylock-based startup incubator Entrepreneur First, also joined the round, according to a statement.

London-based Lingumi delivers video and audio-based pre-school online English education to kids aged two to six. The company, established in late 2015 by Oxford University alumnus Toby Mather, has developed into a team of 16 people across four offices in Cardiff, London, Shenzhen and Singapore.

About 100,000 families in mainland China, Taiwan, Italy, France and other regions are using the Lingumi platform to learn English. The company claims to have taught over 1.5 million English lessons in China, with over 40 per cent of active users playing lessons every day.

The firm offers an annual price of £100, targeting the expanding middle class across tier-one to tier-three cities in China.

“Lingumi’s rapid expansion in the Chinese market required a strategic local investor, and Dr. Min and the team had a clear-sighted understanding of the technology and scale opportunity both in China and globally,” said Lingumi CEO Toby Mather.

The company first entered the Chinese market in May 2019. It said it will use the new funding to build its technology and marketing teams in London, Singapore and Shenzhen, as well as invest in its technology and AI capabilities.

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.