Here’s what you should know today:

1. Softbank confirms in talks with Flipkart after the failed buyout

After Snapdeal walked out on the buyout deal from Flipkart, Snapdeal’s biggest investor Softbank confirms that it’s in talks with Flipkart for a possible investment.

Rumour is Softbank will be investing $1.5 billion to $2 billion to Flipkart from its Vision Fund. Flipkart recently wrapped up a funding round of $1.4 billion in April led by China’s Tencent.

This investment would further strengthen Flipkart’s effort to gain market share and beat Amazon in India.

Read the full story here.

2. UangTeman’s Series A marks Tim Draper’s first investment in Indonesia

Jakarta-based P2P lending platform UangTeam announced its $12 million Series A led by K2 Venture Capital.

Various investors including STI Financial Group, Draper Associates, and existing investors Alpha JWC Ventures and Teong Chee Hooi also participated in the round.

The financial round also marks the first investment by Tim Draper in the country after visited in June, during which his venture network Wavemaker Partners closed its $50 million fund for the market.

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3. Iflix raises $133M to expand in emerging markets

Asia-based streaming services Iflix has raised $133 million in fresh funding led by US media conglomerate Hearst, which also back BuzzFeed, Vice, and Roku.

Founded in 2015 in selected Asian countries, Iflix is now available in 19 countries including Middle East and Africa. The company has raised $300 million to date.

Iflix registered five million users in March and claimed to have its revenue up 230% year-on-year.

Read the full story here.

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1. The first cashless convenience store in Singapore opened by Cheers

Convenience store chain Cheers unveiled the first unmanned, cashless convenience store at Nanyang Polytechnic. It’s the first of its kind in the country.

The store allows customers to pay using one self-checkout system for cashless payments, as well as with quick response codes. Data and video analytics will be used to analyse purchasing behaviour and customise its inventory, with an auto-ordering system eliminating manual stocktaking.

The store will double up as a training facility as well, 50 students from NYP’s School of Business will look after the store.

Read the full story here.

2. Snapdeal calls off $900 million takeover by Flipkart

Less than a week after its board accepted the bid, Snapdeal calls off the $900 million deal with Flipkart.

The company said it is on track to be financially self-sustainable, thanks to the sale of certain noncore assets, such as Freecharge to Axis Bank, and “has now decided to pursue an independent path and is terminating all strategic discussions as a result,” a company spokesperson said in a statement.

It had been reported that SoftBank had agreed to the idea of the acquisition combining Flipkart with Snapdeal. However, billionaire Azim Premji, whose investment company PremjiInvest is a minority shareholder in Snapdeal, raised questions about the merger.

Read the full story here.

3. Alipay strengthen ties in Southeast Asia by partnering with Fave

Daily deals platform Fave, formerly Groupon, is partnering with Alipay to provide a cross-border payment experience in Southeast Asia, starting with Singapore.

Through this partnership with Fave, Alipay users will be able to make payments via the Alipay app at restaurants and offline retailers that are part of the Fave ecosystem and gain special access to offers and rewards.

With over 3 million Chinese tourists expected to visit Singapore this year, the ability to accept Alipay will greatly benefit restaurants and retailers in Singapore. Fave has more than 10,000 restaurants and offline retailers and has over 1 million active users regionally.

Read the full story here.

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1. Baidu partners with PayPal for mobile wallet service

PayPal is expanding its presence on mobile by pairing up with Baidu, allowing the Chinese company’s 100 million users to make payment to PayPal’s 17 million merchants.

The news is the latest in a series of partnership from PayPal after integrating with Apple and Samsung Pay, as well with banks Citi and Chase.

For Baidu, the partnership offers a way to increase the odd in their favor on the competition in China’s mobile wallet landscape that currently dominated by Alibaba’s Alipay and Tencent’s WeChatPay.

Read the full story here

2. Whatsapp hits 1 billion daily users, Whatsapp Status has more users than Snapchat

Chat messengers app Whatsapp records 1 billion daily users as revealed during the Q2 2017 Facebook Earning calls. The company only has 350 million daily users when it was acquired by Facebook in 2014.

Facebook has also successfully rolling out Snapchat’s Stories format to a much wider audience than the original inventor.

Instagram Story and Whatsapp Status are each used by 250 million people every day, meanwhile Snapchat only has 166 million daily users on its app. Facebook itself records 2 billion monthly users.

Read the full story here.

3. Snapdeal to sell its digital payment platform FreeCharge to Axis Bank

After accepting the buyout from Flipkart for $950 million, Snapdeal is also selling its digital payment platforms FreeCharge to Axis Bank for $60 million.

Axis Bank will have access to FreeCharge’s base of over 50 million mobile wallet users, its staff of about 150 – 200 and its resources and proprietary tech.

FreeCharge was first acquired by Snapdeal in 2015. The deal was reportedly worth about $400 million.

Read the full story here.

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.

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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.


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1. Alibaba-backed Grana takes aim at Mainland China

Hong Kong online fashion retailer Grana has expand to mainland China via an official store on Tmall. The company has recently scored a $10 million series A funding led by the Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund.

Grana built a name for itself in the online fashion industry by cutting out the middleman – it manufactures and sells clothes directly to customers. It allows them to reduce the cost the prices for clothes made out of expensive fabrics such as silk or cashmere.

The company expects China to be its next biggest market after the US.

Read the full story here

2. Flipkart raises offer to buy Snapdeal for $850 million

Flipkart revised its bid for Snapdeal to $850 million after its initial offer of $600 million was rejected. In an unexpected turn of event, however, Ahmedabad-based ecommerce Infibeam has jumped into the fray with a proposal to buy for $1 billion.

Founded in February 2010, Snapdeal was the second biggest ecommerce company after Flipkart until 2015. It was valued US$6.5 billion when it raised funding early last year. The company began to crash after Amazon’s entry to the country.

Read the full story here

3. Shopee launches Shopee Mall, expands to B2C space

Shopee has launched Shopee Mall, a dedicated in-app space for B2C sellers. This portal is separate from the regular Shopee marketplace and provide access to products from brands such as 3M, L’Oreal, Philips and Reckitt Benckiser.

All products listed on the Shopee Mall are guaranteed to be authentic. Shoppers can easily identify Shopee Mall product listings with the newly added red ‘Mall’ label.

Within the portal, shoppers can also navigate easily between key brands, category campaigns and personalised recommendations.

Shopee Mall aims to bolster both attributes and assure consumers by ensuring that all sellers on Shopee Mall are verified with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority, a locally registered entity.

Read the full story here

Here’s what you should know today.

1.Amazon is tightening its grip to India’s mobile shoppers

US-based ecommerce giant Amazon is almost neck-to-neck with Flipkart in winning India’s mobile ecommerce users, according to the latest data by 7Park.

Amazon captured 30.3% of the country’s mobile shoppers, just slightly lower from Flipkart’s 30.7%. Meanwhile, Snapdeal lagged behind at 10.8%.

At a closer look, Amazon’s growth has been at the expense of Flipkart. From Q1 2016 to Q1 2017, the company saw a spike of 46%. Flipkart’s app engagement in the meantime has declined 11.5% during the same period.

Mobile plays an important in India’s ecommerce market, especially since 80% of traffic to both Flipkart and Snapdeal came from their respective apps or mobile sites.

Amazon also had 10 times more browsers turning into buyers than Flipkart did. Amazon’s unique purchasers reportedly grew 113.1%, far above Flipkart at 10.8%.

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2. Gojek is raising $1 billion of funding for Southeast Asia expansion

Gojek is looking to raise a $1 billion worth of funding, cited anonymous sources close to process as first reported by Wall Street Journal.

The ride-hailing app is looking to raise capital at a $2 billion pre-money valuation.

The fund is said to be used for their regional expansion plan to Southeast Asia countries such as the Philippines, Thailand, Myanmar, and Vietnam.

In August 2016, Gojek has raised $550 million from various investors including KKR, Warburg Pincus, Farallon Capital, and Capital Group Private Markets.

The company has branching out to fintech by building and promoting their own e-wallet service with much success. Gojek’s direct competitor, Grab has recently following their footsteps by acquiring Indonesian O2O ecommerce platform, Kudo.

Read the rest of the story here.

3. Recommended Reading: Luxury brands are going more and more digital

According to the fifth edition of Contactlab and Exane BNP Paribas’ ‘Digital Competitive Map’, luxury brands’ digital performance was up +5% overall.

The research, which encompasses a range of evaluation parameters, has included social media reach for the first time this year.

Burberry claimed the throne out of the 32 international luxury brands for two consecutive years now. Among the top five are also Louis Vuitton, Tory Burch, Gucci, and Fendi.

“Catering to millennial consumers is especially crucial in order to improve digital sales (…) The beauty of social media platforms, such as Instagram, is that they allow customers and brands to communicate globally, catalyse organic engagement, form creative communities and drive sales.” commented Contactlab’s Senior Advisor, Marco Pozzi.

Read the rest of the story here.