Here’s what you should know today:

1. Snapdeal accepts revised buyout deal from Flipkart

Indian ecommerce company Snapdeal has accepted a takeover offer of $900 million – $950 million from its rival Flipkart. Snapdeal was once valued at over $6 billion.

The deal is revised from Flipkart’s initial offer of $700 million. It is now pending approval of Snapdeal shareholders.

Snapdeal’s biggest investor, Softbank, is reportedly keen to consummate the deal and take an equity stake in Flipkart to profit from India’s booming online retail market.

Read the full story here.

2. DFTZ to boosts ecommerce GDP contribution in Malaysia

The recent launch of Digital Free Trade Zone (DFTZ) and National ecommerce Strategic Roadmap (NeSR) initiatives are expected to boost ecommerce’s contribution to Malaysia’s gross domestic product (GDP) by 9% – 10%, said International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed.

Ecommerce contribution to Malaysia’s GDP is expected to reach 6.4 percent by 2020 from around 5.4 percent in 2015.

The National ecommerce Council said it had initiated various activities and events to spearhead the development of ecommerce in Malaysia, aimed at almost doubling its growth from 11% currently to 20% by 2020.

Read the full story here

3. ST Engineering sets up $150m for corporate venture capital unit

ST Engineering is setting up a corporate venture capital unit to invest in promising technology startups and early-stage companies and has set aside $150 million through ST Engineering Ventures.

Not only funding, the company also offering access to the group’s business network and distribution channels.

The venture will scout for startups that are developing new technologies or creating innovative solutions complementary to the group’s capabilities in higher growth areas, such as in robotics, autonomous technology, data analytics and cybersecurity. The company is also setting up an open innovation lab.

Read the full story here.


Here’s what you should know before the weekend.

1. WeChat to roll out paywall for publishers

China’s WeChat is testing out a paywall that will allow media outlets and bloggers to set a pay-per-read price. Like Facebook, WeChat has brand accounts used by media outlets, celebrities, bloggers, and companies of all sizes.

The paywall gives publishers an alternative to WeChat ads and tips for monetization. Some bloggers also resort to sponsored posts for major companies.

Read the rest of the story here.


2. CMA CGM joins Alibaba’s freight booking system 

Shipping company CMA CGM announced that it has agreed to allow Chinese exporters to book container space on two of its service routes using Alibaba’s “OneTouch” cargo booking system.

For now, CMA CGM’s participation in OneTouch will be limited to container service to the Mediterranean and Adriatic area, using the carrier’s MEX1 and BEX routes.

The OneTouch system allows exporters to send their containers to the destination of the customer’s choice.

Read the rest of the story here.


3. Logistics expected to make up 8-10% of Vietnam’s GDP by 2025

To achieve the goals, the plan suggested improving policies, attracting more investment into logistics infrastructure and fostering cooperation between local logistics firms and international partners.

It also hopes to enhance logistic infrastructure connectivity to link Vietnamese ports with neighbouring countries.  Investment is called for the construction of type I logistic hubs in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City and type II logistic in locations such as Lang Son and Lao Cai.

Read the rest of the story here.

Garena, Southeast Asia’s most valuable tech startup, has closed additional funding from three new investors, reports Tech Crunch.

They include: SeaTown Holdings International, an affiliate of Singapore sovereign wealth fund Temasek, Indonesia’s GDP Venture and Mistletoe, a Japan-based fund.

The amount raised was not disclosed, and Singapore-headquartered Garena did not reveal a post-money valuation.

The company’s last valuation was $3.75 billion following a $170 million funding round in March from Khazanah Nasional Berhad, the Malaysian government’s strategic investment fund, and Chinese tech giant Tencent, a long-term, existing investor.

Garena is best known for the gaming business it started in 2009, which accounts for most of its revenue, but today it also operates a payment service, AirPay and social commerce app, Shopee.

While Garena didn’t elaborate a lot, it did reveal some notable figures for its two newest ventures.

Shopee has reached 1.4 million sellers and annualized GMV of $1.3 billion.

But Shopee’s GMV figure is being calculated using monthly figures rather than an entire year of sales, this means the figures may be somewhat distorted. The same applies to AirPay, which Garena said has an annualized gross transaction value exceeding $510 million, but again, this is an annualized figure.

Regardless, it highlights the fact that Garena is putting its significant weight into social commerce and payments.

The deal will see Taizo Son, the younger brother of SoftBank CEO, and SeaTown’s Archana Parekh join Garena’s advisory board.

A version of this appeared in Tech Crunch on September 5. Read the full version here