Payment firm Soft Space raises $5M to expand in Southeast Asia and Japan

 Soft Space, a payment provider in Southeast Asia, has close its $5 million Series A as it looks to expand across the region, and potentially into Japan. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia-based Soft Space works with large enterprise customers, typically banks, to offer customized solutions for mobile payment, both at point-of-sale and other parts of the process. Typically these solutions are white-labeled. Read More

Xiaomi’s second bezel-less Mi Max smartphone claims a two-day battery

 Chinese smartphone giant Xiaomi made a big splash when it announced the the Mi Max, its much-heralded device with a near bezel-less display, last year — now we have a follow-up phone. The Mi Max 2, unveiled today at an event in Beijing, will be available in China from June 1 priced upwards from RMB 1699, that’s around $247. Xiaomi claims it sold over three million of the… Read More

Acko is an ambitious digital play to disrupt India’s $10B insurance industry

 Acko is an under-the-radar startup that wants to disrupt India’s insurance industry through a digital-only model. This week it stuck its head above the parapet and announced that it has raised $30 million to get started on its bold plan. Founded by Varun Dua, the man behind insurance comparison site Coverfox, Acko is designed as a wholly digital take on insurance in India. The… Read More

LeEco founder Jia Yueting resigns as CEO of its publicly listed unit Leshi

 Chinese tech conglomerate LeEco is reshuffling the executive roster of its publicly traded unit, Leshi Internet Information and Technology Corp., as it continues to struggles with cash flow issues and a bumpy expansion into the U.S. Leshi disclosed in a Shenzhen Stock Exchange filing over the weekend that founder Jia Yueting will leave his role as CEO, but stay on as chairman. Liang Jun, a… Read More

Restaurant guide Zomato got off lightly after a hacker grabbed 6.6M user passwords

 Restaurant guide and food delivery service Zomato looks like it is getting off lightly after it suffered a hack that compromised personal information belonging to 6.6 million users. The India-based company, which offers services in more than 20 countries worldwide, set off alarm bells when it revealed that a hacker had made off with 17 million user records. Read More

Hong Kong’s Qupital raises $2M led by Alibaba to finance invoice loans for SMES

 Qupital, a one-year-old Hong Kong-based startup that addresses cash flow issues for SMEs, has closed a $2 million seed funding round. The is certainly a notable size for an early stage investment in Hong Kong’s nascent but growing startup scene. The financing was led by Hong Kong-London firm MindWorks Ventures and the $130 million Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund which launched in 2015.… Read More

Xiaomi puts the focus on India with plans to open 100 retail stores

 Xiaomi is increasing its office retail presence in China as bids to gain ground stolen by rivals in its homeland, and now it is making that very same push in its second largest market, India. The Chinese company, which is valued at $45 billion, suffered a tough time last year as sales growth slowed — Xiaomi, notably, didn’t go public with sales figures for 2016 — but India… Read More

Tencent doubles down on game studio Pocket Gems with $90M investment

 Chinese internet Tencent has continued its recent investment spree after it backed U.S.-based game studio Pocket Gems to the tune of $90 million. Tencent invested in Pocket Gems back in 2015, when it put in a reported $60 million for a 20 percent stake. This time around the Wall Street Journal reported the investment as $90 million, which TechCrunch has confirmed independently. That deal,… Read More

Xiaomi sneaks into North America with Mexico launch

 Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi is preparing to enter North America, but it isn’t quite the launch you may be waiting on. The company, which was last valued at $45 billion by investors, has revealed plans to sneak into the continent by selling its Redmi Note 4 phone in Mexico. Fans can pick up the device from Coppel, Best Buy and Sam’s Club stores when it is stocked towards… Read More

Xiaomi sneaks into North America with Mexico launch

 Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi is preparing to enter North America, but it isn’t quite the launch you may be waiting on. The company, which was last valued at $45 billion by investors, has revealed plans to sneak into the continent by selling its Redmi Note 4 phone in Mexico. Fans can pick up the device from Coppel, Best Buy and Sam’s Club stores when it is stocked towards… Read More