China Tech Newsletter – July 8, 2015

Alipay’s mobile app launches a major update, with an addition of a social layer that enables adding contacts, creating group chat and money transfer. Its user interface design is almost the same with WeChat’s. (Here are some screenshots of the two.)

Also, Alipay mobile app users now are able to manage accounts for family members, buy stocks through Yu’ebao, etc.

WeChat launches a mobile version of its official amount management system. Now official accounts managers are able to edit and send out mass multimedia messages, and receive and reply to comments on WeChat mobile app.

The leading ride hailing company Didi Kuaidi announces US$2 billion new round of financing at a US$15 billion valuation from new investors including Capital International Private Equity Fund, Ping An Ventures and returning investors Tencent, Alibaba Group, Temasek Holdings and Coatue Management.

The company will have US$3.5 billion in cash upon completion of this round.

In an internal e-mail to all employees, the company’s management mentioned they did plan to go international.

Meituan “is planning to raise more than $1 billion in a new funding round that could value the online group-buying service at more than $15 billion.” — The Wall Street Journal

Luxury flash sale site Glamour Sales China, or, announces strategic investment from Alibaba Group.

Alibaba will have a bigger-than-50% stake in for about US$100 million, NetEase News reported.

Launched in 2010, the site has had more than 2400 brand partners. The comany’s CEO and co-founder is Thibault Villet, former President of Coach Greater China.

Online luxury retailer Seecoo announces Series E funding from Ping An Ventures.

Vacation rentals platform Xiaozhu announces US$60 million in Series C round of funding from CITIC CapitalMagic Stone Alternative, Joy Capital and returning investor Morningside Ventures.

The service, launched in 2012, has a presence in more than 200 cities, according to the company.

AbleCloud, which provides cloud connectivity solutions for smart devices, has raised Series A funding from ChinaEquity and its angel investor Legend Star.

AbleCloud’s service was launched in February this year. Existing players include Gizwits and US-headquartered Ayla Networks.

Alibaba Group increases its stake in Singapore Post to 14.5%, becoming the second largest shareholder of the latter. — Reuters

Wealth management firm Jupai Holdings sets terms for $65 million IPO on the NYSE.

China’s top legislative body releases the text of the proposed internet security law. — Associate Press

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