Sharing Economy Gets A Boost In Asia, Uber Acquired JUMP Bike And More…

By  |  April 13, 2018

Here’s a wrap of this week’s [09-13 April] headlines from around the startup world.


The New York-based co-working has acquired Chinese competitor Naked Hub for USD 400 Mn as per a report by Bloomberg. WeWork has been pushing for expansion into Asia, having purchased Singapore-based competitor SpaceMob last year. Naked Hub itself had acquired a majority stake in Australian co-working Gravity this January.

Toutiao and three other news apps disappear from app stores in China’s heavy-handed approach to regulating news and social media. Authorities in China have repeatedly criticized Toutiao and other news apps for carrying supposedly offensive content.

SoCar, a South Korean car-share firm, announced an investment of close to USD 55 Mn from private equity firm IMM. Earlier this year, it announced that it would begin operations in Malaysia.

Meanwhile, another co-working space startup from S. Korea, Fast Five, landed an investment of USD 18 Mn from Atinum Investment and Time Folio Asset Management.

Indian online travel company from India TravelTriangle secures USD 12 Mn in series C fundraise led by Fundamentum, with existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners, RB Investments, SAIF Partners and others also participating.

LoadShare, logistics startup from India secured the USD 5 Mn investment in a series A round led by Stellaris Venture Partners, with participation from Matrix Partners.

Singapore has broken a VC funding record. The city-state saw a record USD 2.68 Bn in VC funding in the first quarter of 2018, most of which was accounted for by Grab’s US$2.5 billion series G fundraise. The global VC market had a strong start with US$49.3 billion investment raised across 2,661 deals in Q1, almost beating the previous quarterly record, according to KPMG.

Singapore’s student-run VC Fund that only invests in student-run start-ups has announced its first investment of USD 19 K into Nurture.AI a platform that allows for peer-to-peer criticism of AI papers to improve accountability of research.


Swedish street-level imagery and mapping platform Mapillary has raised USD 15 Mn in a series B round led by BMW i Ventures. It manages its mapping operations database of more than 260 million street-level images.

Travel Perk secured USD 21 Mn in a Series B round led by Berlin-based venture capital firm Target Global and London-based Felix Capital. It is a travel tech startup in Barcelona, which manages business travel bookings.

Chargefi, 2013 founded wireless charging start-up, announced USD 6.1  Mn in a funding round led by Accelerated Digital Ventures (ADV). It has developed an IoT platform to manage wireless power infrastructure for businesses.

Clarivate Analytics announced the strategic acquisition of AI-technology start-up, Kopernio. The start-up maintains a platform to enable search of online papers, research articles and books from open sources and various publishers.

UK’s furniture marketplace, eporta has raised USD 8 Mn in a series A round that was led by Canvas Ventures with participation from other VC firms.

Priori Data, a B2B platform provider of mobile apps to be acquired by UK-based app management platform appScatter. The cash and stock deal is expected to complete by May.


Billie, an e-commerce startup that offers personal care products for women, grabbed USD 6 Mn in seed fund round led by Silverton Partners. Launched last year, Billie is an initiative to fight against Pink Tax –  a tax charged at women-specific goods and services.

“Tentrr” founded by former NYSE managing director Michael D’Agostino, recently closed USD 8 Mn Series A round. San-Francisco based venture “West” led it. Tentrr, as the name suggests provides private camping sites.

Artificial intelligence-powered mobile biometric recognition company Element landed USD 12 Mn Series A round led by GDP ventures and VTB ventures. The platform uses facial, palm, and fingerprint recognition software to identify individuals.

Uber, in a bid to become a multi-mode transportation services provider, has acquired bike-sharing startup JUMP. According to some sources, the deal was worth USD 200 Mn.

Panasonic backed venture fund, Conductive Ventures debuts with a USD 100 Mn fund.  The same will be led by experienced venture capitalists Carey Lai and Paul Yeh and has already invested in four start-ups Ambiq Micro, CSC Generation, Desktop Metal, and Sprinklr.

Punchh, a social and digital marketing platform secured USD 20 Mn in series B round led by Sapphire Ventures, with participation from returning investor Cervin Ventures. Including angel and Series A funding aggregate funding is about USD 31 Mn.

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