Don’t miss out these headlines for the week: Ex-Alibaba executive’s vegetable-selling site gets USD 13 M; Live streaming app 17 rebounds from App Store ban with RMB 150 M; and VZAN lands USD 1.5 M for its mobile forum service on WeChat.
VZAN lands USD 1.5 M for its mobile forum service on WeChat
The funds will be used to improve the company’s services and user interaction on its platform.
VZAN, a mobile forum service provider on WeChat, just received RMB 10 million (USD 1.5 million) in angel financing from Banyan Capital and Shinuke Fund, Chinese tech websites have reported.
According to the company, the funds will be used for product development and promotion.
Founded in July 2015, VZAN is a WeChat-based forum platform aimed at providing easy interaction between WeChat official accounts and their followers.
Alibaba financial report: Cainiao logistics a boon to revenue
Cainiao, the logistics subsidiary of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, has completed a financing round worth RMB 10 billion (USD 1.5 billion), Alibaba’s 2016 Q4 financial report confirmed on Thursday. Alibaba says it will hold 47% of Cainiao’s stake after this round of financing.
In its financial report, Alibaba said Cainiao is an important part of its ecosystem because it helps improve the efficiency of Alibaba’s logistics. According to the financial report, customers in 13 cities in China including Beijing, Tianjin, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Chengdu can receive their goods bought online on the same day the order is made. Delivery within 48 hours is available in 88 cities.
Apart from providing fast delivery service in cities, Cainiao also tries to improve logistics in rural areas. Cainiao, together with Alibaba’s Taobao, have set up service stations in more than 14,000 villages and 2800 counties.
Live streaming app 17 rebounds from App Store ban with RMB 150 M
After disappearing from the App Store last September because of “sexual content”, ’17’, the live streaming app from Taiwan, announced on Thursday that not only is it available in mainland China again, but it will also found a company for the purposes of specifically targeting mainland China’s live streaming market.
17 will work with a Beijing-based game publisher, MOYOGAME Ltd., to set up the company with a RMB 150 million fund from investors including LeSports’ capital fund. The intention is to create an independent company with a specific team that knows how best to localize the app for China in order to compete with so many rivals in this market.
The company plans to build something akin to a live streaming version of Twitter. It will be a more social celebrity-centric live streaming app that is different than many of its live streaming competitors that rely mostly on amateur singers and actors to deliver shows. 17 has an advantage in that it has already accumulated many celebrity users from Hong Kong and Taiwan.
Ex-Alibaba executive’s vegetable-selling site gets USD 13 M
A B2B platform selling vegetables founded by Yu Lingbing, the creator of Taobao’s rural e-commerce business, has received RMB 85 million (USD 13 million) in a Series A+ round.
The financing came from Yintai Holdings, Matrix Partners China and IDG China, tech blog 36 Kr reported on Tuesday.
Songxiaocai, or “delivering vegetables”, is a B2B platform offering procurement, delivery and after-sales services to vegetable retailers. After users place an order on the app, the company gets the produce from suppliers and puts them in cold storage units to prevent them from spoiling. The second day after the order is made, the buyer receives their goods from their nearest cold storage unit. The company’s services are now available in Wuhan, Hangzhou, Shanghai and Beijing.
Eight investors inject USD 120 M into this EV startup
China’s national hi-tech enterprise, LEO Group, released an announcement on Monday that it injected RMB 350 million (USD 54 million) in new capital into the EV maker Beijing Chehejia Information Technology Company for an 11.74% stake in the company. Seven other investors also contributed RMB 430 million in financing to the company.
Li Xiang, CEO of Chehejia, confirmed this round of financing on Tuesday. He said the company completed Series A financing to the tune of RMB 2.5 billion in just ten months since being founded. At present, the company is valued at RMB three billion.
The new investment will be used to implement a full ecosystem plan for the electric vehicle industry including business expansion, R&D and a production facility.
(Top photo from Baidu Images.)