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Daily Briefing

In Brief

Oct 5, 2018 by The Passage Team
In Brief

Tencent announces restructuring amid regulation pain

Source: Reuters

Chinese internet giant Tencent Holdings announced on Sunday its first restructuring in six years. The move comes at a time the company faces increased challenges from tighter government regulations.

In a statement on Sunday, the Shenzhen-based and Hong Kong-listed company said that it will consolidate three content business groups to one unit and create a new group for cloud and smart industries. The company said it will also set up a technology committee to help strengthen its research and development and promote collaboration and innovation.

The reshuffle comes as Tencent Holdings, which has seen a hefty fall in market value this year, is facing fresh criticism from analysts and investors unnerved by regulatory roadblocks, a fuzzy overseas strategy and growing debt.

Bullet Messenger’s downloads drop

Source: Technode

Bullet Messenger’s daily downloads and app store ranking has fallen off a cliff. On September 27 its daily downloads dropped significantly to below 6,000 times, a local media outlet said. To put it into context, the app was being downloaded nearly 568,000 times of per day at its height roughly a month ago.

There have been signs showing that the messaging app is quickly losing traction. The app was criticized not only for lax security settings but also for failing to keep vulgar content in check.

A few weeks ago as it celebrated its first month anniversary, the app released monthly figures, which shows that it had amassed 7.48 million users. When it launched last month, the company quickly gained a lot of media attention and held the top spot on China’s iOS app store for 9 days and was the most downloaded social networking app for 13 days.

Samoyed files for US IPO

Source: Technode

Samoyed, a leading online loan facilitator operating in China’s credit card repayment market, filed for a USD 80 million IPO at the New York Stock Exchange. Its registered users reached 17 million by the end of 2017 and further increased to 24.4 million as of June 30, 2018. The company turned in H1'18 with a net profit of CNY 24.6 million.

Samoyed targets credit-proven millennials in China, especially individuals born in the 1980s and 1990s who already have credit cards. The company facilitates three credit services for credit-proven millennials: credit card balance transfer, cash advance and credit loans.

China’s tech IPO boom of this year has triggered the listing of several online credit card loan services, such as V Credit, 51 Credit Card, X Financial.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk fined $20 mn, agrees to resign

Source: ANI

US electric car company Tesla and its chairman Elon Musk have been fined USD 20 million each after regulators filed a lawsuit accusing Musk of making "false and misleading" statements about the company. As part of a settlement agreement with the US government's business watchdog—Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)—Musk will also have to step down as the company's chairman.

Musk had recently tweeted that he would take Tesla private at USD 420 per share - a substantial premium to its trading price at the time. Musk claimed funding for the deal had been secured and that the only remaining uncertainty was a shareholder vote.

Musk has 22 million followers on the micro-blogging social networking platform. Disclosing trading information in public before notifying stock exchange is a breach of the law.

Flipkart gets $ 175 mn infusion from Walmart

Source: Livemint

Flipkart’s payments arm PhonePe has recieved USD 175 million from Walmart last week, as part of Walmart's USD 500-million commitment to the company.

Phone Pe is also in talks with unknown investors to raise a fresh round of funding. The payment arm may look to raise up to USD 1 billion sometime next year.

Earlier, reports had surfaced that Phone Pe would get investment from Google, but those discussions seem to have collapsed.

"This is part of the USD 500 million commitment that was made to us. Walmart has added these funds to help us compete even more aggressively, grow faster and take on competition,” a statement by Flipkart said.

Paytm Mall may acquire majority stake in Big Basket

Source: Business Standard

Fintech major Paytm's e-commerce arm Paytm Mall is reportedly in talks to acquire a majority stake in online grocer BigBasket. However, a Paytm spokesperson told Business Standard that they are not in talks with BigBasket. In February this year, BigBasket raised USD 300 million Series E round led by Chinese e-tailer Alibaba. Interestingly, the Chinese e-tailer also backs Paytm Mall.

In June this year, Paytm mall raised about INR 1,500 crore from Japan’s SoftBank Group Corp and its existing investor Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, as part of the INR 3,000 crore funding commitment that was initially announced in April. In April, Alibaba and Japan’s SoftBank, together pledged to invest a total of INR 3,000 crore (USD 450 million) into Paytm Mall. SoftBank plans to invest a total of INR 2,600 crore in Paytm Mall, with the rest coming from Alibaba.

*MKE group gets new CEO *

Source: The Star Online

Datin Ami Moris has been appointed chief executive officer of Malayan Banking Bhd’s investment banking arm, Maybank Kim Eng Group (MKE). She takes charge on Monday.

Ami takes over from Datuk John Chong Eng Chuan, who has assumed the position of group CEO, community financial services, Maybank. She will be responsible for overseeing all of the investment banking, brokerage and derivatives businesses in Malaysia and across MKE’s regional platform.

Ami joined Maybank IB in 2009 as the head of equity markets and was responsible for both the institutional and retail businesses.

Singapore company wins China wastewater project

Source: The Straits Times

A subsidiary of the Singaporean construction company AnnAik has clinched additional service concession rights to build and operate a wastewater treatment plant in the Chinese town of Changxing.

AnnAik's 60 per cent unit, ChangXing AngWei Environmental & Ecological Engineering Co, entered into the extension framework agreement on September 28 with the Changxing municipal government.

Under the deal, the total daily wastewater treatment capacity of the plant will increase to 30,000 tonnes from 20,000 tonnes. The government has guaranteed that, based on 1.8 yuan per tonne, in the first two years of operation, the plant will treat at least 60 per cent of its targeted total capacity; and at least 80 per cent of targeted total capacity from the third year onwards.

The Passage Team

The Passage is committed to creating in-depth content over technology industry across Asia with a focus on emerging startups in the technology, healthcare, education, food, tech, travel & mobility segments.

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