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Will unmanned convenience stores like F5 Future Store be trending in the future? & more

24-hour unmanned convenience store F5 Future Store receives USD 4.4 million for Series A+

F5 Future Store

Founded in: 2014

Financing status: RMB 30 million (USD 4.4 million) Series A+ round in 2017

24-hour unmanned convenience store F5 Future Store on Monday received USD 4.4 million for its Series A+ financing round to open new convenience stores in new cities.

F5 Future Store is a 24-hour unmanned convenience store that provides customers with fresh food, and customers can complete the purchase process themselves based on the stores’ smart system.

Its 24-hour unmanned convenience stores are made up of four sections – three vending machines and an automatic cleaning machine. The first vending machine sells fast-moving consumer goods such as standard canned beverages, and it takes an average of 7 seconds to complete the order. The second vending machine sells fresh foods such as cart noodles and fishballs, with an average time required to complete the order is 50 seconds. The third vending machine prepares beverages such as hot coffee and other drinks on the spot, and customers can have their ordered drinks ready within 20 seconds after placing their orders.

Currently, there are three ways that customers can purchase items on their own at F5 Future Stores. First, customers can place orders on its app online, and then pick up the items from a nearby F5 future store. Next, customers can place orders through self-service terminals at F5 future stores. Third, customers can scan the QR codes of commodities in the stores, and the machine will process the orders.

Founded in 2014 in Guangdong, it has so far opened six 24-hour unmanned convenience stores in Guangzhou, and it has a stock keeping unit at about 800.

This Series A+ financing round was from Sinovation Ventures. The capital will be used to introduce new food categories to its convenience stores, as well as expand its business to new cities. It aims to open 30 to 60 stores in the following six months.

Digital publishing company Dook Book receives USD 18 M for Series A

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Dook Book

Founded in: 2006

Financing status: RMB 128 million (USD 20 million) Series A round in 2017

Digital publishing company Dook Book on Tuesday received USD 18 million for its Series A financing round to recruit new talent to expand its team.

Dook Book is a digital publishing company that produces bestselling books every year.  Each year, Dook Book will produce at least one book with over a million copies sold. These include Love O2O and The Tibet Code, which were its bestsellers in recent years.

A Shanghai company founded in 2006, Dook Book has been in the publishing industry for 11 years. “Literature and publishing are the sources of intellectual property, which is the foundation of a good movie, television drama, online drama or video game,” said a managing director at Dook Book. Thus, with its digital publishing business as the base and its connection with top authors, the company has expanded its services to new media marketing and film investment operations.

This Series A financing round was led by Legend Capital, with China Capital Management and some other investors participating in this investment. The company plans to use the fund to foster new intellectual properties, as well as investing more on talent recruitment to expand its team for its new developing businesses including the conversion of intellectual property rights into movies, as well as create more content for new media marketing.

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