Here’s a wrap of the day’s news.
Gundersen to leave Zalora (Singapore). Parker Gundersen will step down as group CEO of fashion-focused ecommerce firm Zalora at the end of May due to undisclosed personal reasons. He joined Zalora in August 2016, just five months after the company sold its Thailand and Vietnam businesses. It sold a 49 percent stake in its Philippine unit to Ayala Group the following February. Zalora said the search for a replacement for Gundersen is underway. (e27)
Shopee launches China marketplace (Singapore). The Sea-owned ecommerce portal has opened the virtual doors of its China Marketplace. Users in Singapore will be able to purchase a range of affordable “made-in-China” products direct from Chinese vendors, without having to pay for shipping or agents fees. (Shopee)
Crypto-traders await further crackdown (China). The country’s blockchain community is expecting further prohibitions on cryptocurrencies to be introduced by the government in the coming weeks. Several crypto-traders have reported that their WeChat discussion groups are being monitored or shut down, while others have voluntarily closed their groups in anticipation of a crackdown. (China Money Network)
Pacific country to issue its own cryptocurrency (The Marshall Islands). The archipelagic nation will issue its own cryptocurrency – named SOV – that will be circulated as legal tender along with the US dollar. Proceeds from selling the token will go to the country’s National Trust Fund. Venezuela became the first sovereign state to launch its own digital currency – the oil-backed petro – last month, with the country’s government claiming to have raised US$735 million in its pre-sale. (Reuters)
Energy and cleantech
Microsoft and Sunseap sign solar energy deal (Singapore/US). The US tech giant and Singaporean solar energy startup Sunseap will create the city-state’s largest rooftop solar portfolio to date. Hundreds of rooftop cells across Singapore will generate power for data centers, helping them to meet energy consumption efficiency goals. Sunseap raised US$4.8 million last May as part of a series C round targeting US$75 million. (Microsoft)
Didi Chuxing and Renrenche deepen partnership (China). Ride-hailing firm Didi will collaborate with used car marketplace Renrenche to offer solutions for vehicle supply and maintenance services. Didi invested US$200 million in Renrenche last September. (Technode)
See: Previous Asia news roundups
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