Indonesia’s Go-Jek revealed plans for expanding beyond its home soil today, in what would constitute a major shake-up for the regional ride-hailing and mobile payments sectors. Elsewhere, a Facebook co-founder’s firm made its first Indian startup investment, while Sydney’s stock exchange put its faith in blockchain technology.
Go-Jek to begin global expansion next year (Indonesia). Chief technology officer Ajey Gore said that the ride-hailing and payments firm would unveil its first service outside its native Indonesia in the Philippines early next year, with other Southeast Asian countries to follow later in 2018. Go-Jek’s move into new markets will intensify competition with US player Uber and regional rival Grab, which is also diversifying into mobile payments. (Reuters)
OBike suffers global data breach (Singapore). The bike-sharing app was subject to a two-week breach which saw personal data including user names, email addresses, and phone numbers of oBike users across several countries leaked online. The company said that the security flaw related to an API which it has now disabled. (CNET)
Alibaba and Ford sign three-year collaboration deal (China). The two companies will work together on AI, cloud computing, connectivity, and mobility services, directed towards selling – and upselling – the electric vehicles Ford is building in China. The partnership aims to “redefine how consumers purchase and own vehicles, as well as how to leverage digital channels to identify new retail opportunities,” Alibaba said in a statement. (Technode)
MSwipe series D marks first India investment for Saverin’s B Capital (India). The point-of-sale provider has closed its series D round, raising a total of US$40 million to expand its merchant network. Singapore-based B Capital, the VC firm headed up by Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin, led the round alongside DSG Consumer Partners. Matrix Partners, Falcon Edge Capital, and UC-RNT Fund also participated. (Livemint)
Paytm merges consumer deals companies, acquires combination (India). The payments firm announced that it orchestrated the merger of Groupon affiliate Nearbuy and consumer deals startup Little into a single company, in which it has since acquired a majority stake. Paytm is expected to use the company to help its merchant partners offer deals to their customers. (Livemint)
Sydney stock exchange adopts blockchain tech (Australia). The Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) will implement a blockchain-based system to record and track changes in equity share ownership, replacing its existing book entry system. US software company Digital Asset Holdings built and tested the new infrastructure. (Financial Times)
Real estate and property
PropertyGuru hires former Snapdeal exec (Singapore). The property listings portal has appointed Manav Kamboj as its chief technology officer. He previously served as vice president and head of buyer product and technology at Indian ecommerce firm Snapdeal, and will lead PropertyGuru’s push to incorporate AI and augmented reality technologies into its platform. (PropertyGuru)
Investors, incubators, and accelerators
CapitaLand signs deals with EDB and SGInnovate* (Singapore)*. The real estate company has launched a US$10 million program with Singapore’s Economic Development Board (EDB) aimed at upskilling its staff and partners with tech expertise. In addition, CapitalLand’s VC arm C31V has been selected as a co-investment partner for commercialization agency SGInnovate’s “deep tech” initiative, Startup SG Equity. (CapitaLand)
Via ID partners with Hera Capital on Asian auto investments (Singapore). Via ID, the VC and accelerator arm of French automotive servicing and parts company Mobivia, will work with Singaporean private equity firm Hera Capital. The two will share deal flow and provide co-investment opportunities to one another, with a focus on startups working in “intelligent and sustainable mobility.” (Via ID)
See: Previous Asia tech news roundups
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