Asia News Roundup: Razer Acquiring Fintech Firm MOL Global, Nio To Set Up $500M Auto Fund

Razer co-founder Min-Liang Tan (center) / Photo credit: Razer

Here’s what happened in tech today and this weekend.


Razer to fully acquire MOL Global (Singapore). The gaming lifestyle company today announced its intention to acquire Malaysian fintech firm MOL, a move that comes after it bought a 34.9 percent stake last June. Razer wants to get the remaining 65.1 percent of MOL Global’s issued share capital for a cash consideration of approximately US$61 million. The proposed merger, which is subject to approval from MOL Global’s shareholders, will combine the two companies’ virtual currencies: Razer’s zGold and MOLPoints by MOL. (Razer)

Soft Space raises series B funding from Sumitomo Mitsui (Malaysia). The Malaysian fintech startup reported the closing of a series B investment with Sumitomo Mitsui Card Company – a subsidiary of Tokyo-headquartered financial giant Sumitomo Mitsui – paving the way for its entry into the Japanese market. The investment is seen as positively spurring Soft Space’s business growth opportunities in Japan and the wider region. (Soft Space)


Nykaa scores US$11.3 million, claims US$453 million valuation (India). The beauty e-tailer secured the investment from several family offices and high-net-worth individuals. Nykaa – which is said to hold 33 percent of India’s online market in beauty products and services – claims it is “EBITDA-breakeven” and is aiming to be profitable by FY2019. The startup said it would use these latest funds to enhance retail distribution to boost its private-label offering, which currently comprises less than 10 percent of its revenue. (The Economic Times)


Nio to set up US$500 million venture fund (China). The electric-vehicle maker’s VC arm, Nio Capital, is building the offshore fund to invest in new automotive technologies worldwide. Also known as NextEV, Nio – which has raised funding from Baidu, Lenovo, and Tencent, among others – was one of the first companies to be awarded a license to test autonomous vehicles in China. The Shanghai-based startup is said to be planning a US$2 billion IPO in America later this year. (Bloomberg)

Mobike claims shift from “rapid to responsible” growth strategy (China). On Earth Day, the Chinese bike-sharing firm said it would stop distributing new bicycles in areas considered to be oversaturated with dockless hire bikes. This was one of the company’s first public announcements since being taken over by Meituan-Dianping in a US$3.4 billion deal earlier this month. Mobike also plans to share data with the Chinese government to help improve urban planning processes and has committed US$15.9 million to improving its user credit scoring system, which punishes or rewards cyclists according to their conduct while using its service. (TechNode)

Health and well-being

Doxper secures US$1.1 million funding (India). The startup, which helps doctors manage outpatient records, said it will use the capital to expand to Southeast Asia, the UK, the Middle East, Brazil, and South Africa by early next year. It’s already piloting overseas operations in Bangladesh and Nigeria. Vidal Healthcare led the pre-series A round, having joined Doxper’s August 2017 seed round alongside Capier Investments, Globevestor, and a number of angel investors. (Inc42)

Property and real estate

Revolution Precrafted lands US$300 million Caribbean deal (The Philippines). The maker of prefab homes has expanded into the Caribbean market with an exclusive dealership with NOVO Development, a real estate company based in Trinidad and Tobago. The partnership is the first part of a multi-phase plan to develop up to $1 billion of property in the region’s growing housing sector. (Revolution Precrafted)

Social media

“Fake news” is also a problem for WeChat (China/US). WeChat-focused news providers in the US tend to favor emotive topics such as immigration and race relations over more general issues like employment and healthcare, according to a study by Columbia University’s Tow Center for Digital Journalism. Researchers also found that news published on WeChat was rife with sensationalism and misinformation when compared to both English- and Chinese-language mainstream media. Echoing similar controversies involving Facebook and Twitter, the Chinese app’s low barrier to entry “has generated a profusion of content publishers native to the platform and intense competition for attention,” and “the abundance of revenue-driven content published, coupled with partisan forces” makes it “especially vulnerable to political misinformation,” said the report. (TechNode)





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