Today, Go-Jek revealed that it has been busy on the acquisitions front, while there were further developments in Asia’s ever-changing cryptocurrency space.
Go-Jek acquires three local startups (Indonesia). The ride-hailing company has confirmed its acquisition of offline payments processor Kartuku, microlending network Mapan, and online payments gateway Midtrans. Together with Go-Jek’s Go-Pay platform, the combined business will process US$5 billion in transactions based on an annualized figure from last month. “We are now taking Go-Jek to the next stage. This marks a significant development in our position at the heart of Indonesia’s vibrant fintech industry,” said Go-Jek founder and CEO Nadiem Makarim. (Tech in Asia)
Airwallex gets US$6 million pre-series B injection (Australia). The cross-border transactions startup counts Tencent, MasterCard, Gobi Ventures and Sequoia Capital among its previous backers. The latest investment came from Square Peg Capital in advance of a series B round planned for next year. Prior to this, Airwallex has raised US$16 million including US$13 million in its May series A round. (TechCrunch)
Canopy nabs US$3.4 million investment (Singapore). The startup – which uses tech to aggregate financial data from multiple sources – is using the funding for product development and to expand sales operations to new markets including Hong Kong and Switzerland. Credit Suisse and Lionrock Capital were among the investors to participate in the round. (Canopy)
FinBucket raises US$1.87 million (India). The online marketplace connects borrowers with lenders, providing opportunities to secure loans and make investments. FinBucket will use the funds to scale up its headcount to 200 and enhance its technology. Impanix Capital led the round. (Inc42)
Blockchain association pushes for cryptocurrency trading transparency (South Korea). Fourteen cryptocurrency exchanges have agreed to the Korea Blockchain Industry Association’s proposed rules, which includes limiting individuals to a single trading account once their identity has been verified by traditional financial institutions like banks. The South Korean won accounts for one of the largest chunks of global cryptocurrency trading volume. However, the token economy has faced increasing regulatory scrutiny in the country, which banned initial coin offerings in September. (Reuters)
Japanese company to pay employees in bitcoin (Japan). GMO Internet will begin paying up to US$890 of its employees’ salaries in bitcoin beginning February next year. Employees will have to opt into the scheme, which will be open to around 4,000 of the company’s personnel in Japan. “We hope to improve our own literacy of virtual currency by actually using it,” said spokeswoman Harumi Ishii, explaining the move. (The Guardian)
Alibaba invests in Xpeng (China). The amount was undisclosed, but Alibaba is reported to have acquired a 10 percent stake in electric vehicle (EV) maker Xpeng. The deal comes as China’s tech giants up their investments in EV, connected car, and self-driving technologies, with Tencent backing local startup Nio and US player Tesla in recent months. (Tech in Asia)
ThinkForce secures US$68 million in series A funds (China). The startup builds chips for artificial intelligence uses and accompanying firmware. Sequoia Capital, Hillhouse Capital, and Alibaba founder Jack Ma’s Yungfeng Capital participated in the fundraise alongside machine vision startup Yitu Technology. (China Money Network)
Undisclosed funding for dronemaker WeDoSky (India). The startup said it would use the investment from Mumbai Angels to develop its VisualAI software for turning aerial photos into georeferenced 2D and 3D models. It will also work on integrating solutions for the agricultural, infrastructure, and insurance industries. (VCCircle)
See: Previous Asia tech news roundups
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