China Tech Newsletter – June 18, 2015

Farmlink, which distributes food products to restaurants through its mobile app and WeChat application, announces US$30 million in Series B round of funding led by Dianping, the leading ratings and reviews service, and joined by Sequoia Capital who had invested US$8 million in it in late 2014.

Launched in June 2014, Farmlink now has “hundreds of clients” in Shanghai and Beijing. The company plans to expand to 35 cities with the new capital.

Since 2014 Dianping has invested a series of companies in food tech industry, including Wiselong (online ordering and delivery solution), Shich Technology (restaurant management software), Himasoft (catering software), TCSL (management software for restaurants and hotels), Meican (online food ordering) and (food delivery).

Xilehang, which provides in-flight internet solutions and content services, has secured RMB200 million (about US$32m) investment from existing shareholder BlueFocus Communication Group (SZ: 300058) that will increase the latter’s stake to 25%.

Xilehang’s services have been available on more than 130 planes of Hainan Airlines, according to the company.

Short-term rental service Tujia is valued at more than US$1 billion in a US$250 million round of financing led by All-Stars Investment and joined by existing investor Ctrip, a leading online travel service. — The Wall Street Journal

Tujia announced US$100 million Series C funding in June 2014.

Chelaile (“A vehicle is coming.”), a real-time bus tracking app, has raised US$15 million in Series B funding led by CBC Capital and participated by returning investor Alibaba Capital, the venture investment arm of Alibaba Group. (via Sina Tech)

NetDragon WebSoft Inc. (HK:777) is in talks to acquire UK-headquartered education solutions developer Promethean World (LSE:PRW) for up to US$130 million in cash.

Promethean’s technology is powering over 500,000 classrooms in 100 countries, according to the company.

China’s national pension fund has acquired a 5% stake in Ant Financial Services Group, Alibaba’s finance arm, Wang Zhongming, vice chairman of the board, disclosed today at a Beijing event. (via Sina Tech)

Alibaba Group and Foxconn Technology Group will each invest JPY 1.45 billion (about US$12m) in SoftBank Robotics Holdings Corp., the robotics business of SoftBank Corp. Alibaba and Foxconn will each hold 20% in it upon completion of the deal.

June 18th is the new online shopping holiday invented by Chinese e-commerce companies. The idea seemed to be initiated by Alibaba’s Tmall, Xiaomi, and many Chinese e-commerce companies joined it.


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