Tencent


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Reddit Raising $150M To $300M On $2.7B Valuation

Reddit raising $150M to $300M on $2.7B valuationDuncan Riley / SiliconANGLE - 8 months ago
  • According to an unconfirmed report published Tuesday by TechCrunch, the round will be led by Chinese internet giant Tencent Holdings Ltd., somewhat ironic given that Reddit was banned in China in August. Other investors in the round may include Sequoia Capital, Andreessen Horowitz and Y Combinator.
  • Founded in 2005 by University of Virginia students Steve Huffman and Alexis Ohanian, Reddit bills itself as the front page of the internet.
  • The site, a sort of amalgam between social networking a la Facebook and old-school online forums, was acquired by Conde Nast in 2006 before being spun off as a standalone company in 2011 on a $200 million valuation.
  • Despite being a private company that does not disclose figures, Reddit is believed to have 330 million monthly active users over 150,000 subreddits.

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Vulcan Capital Invests In Fortnite Creator Epic Games As Part Of Epic $1.25B Round

Vulcan Capital invests in Fortnite creator Epic Games as part of epic $1.25B roundNat Levy / GeekWire - 11 months ago
  • Epic Games, creator of the wildly popular battle royale game Fortnite, has raised a massive $1.25 billion funding round, and Vulcan Capital is getting in on the action.
  • The coalition of investors in the round includes companies that specialize in technology, entertainment, professional sports, e-sports, and live events.
  • “We’re excited to partner with the finest minds in the financial, sports, and entertainment communities.
  • Bloomberg notes that Epic Games sold a 40 percent stake in the company to Chinese internet giant Tencent in 2012, but the company said in a press release that Sweeney continues to control the company.

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Apple Apologizes For Account Hacks In China

Apple apologizes for account hacks in ChinaDuncan Riley / SiliconANGLE - 11 months ago
  • Tencent Holdings Ltd., the second-largest mobile payments provider in China, also confirmed that its customers also had funds stolen by hackers utilizing Apple IDs.
  • It’s unusual for large tech companies — Ant Financial is an affiliate company of Alibaba Group Holdings Ltd., the company with the seventh-largest market capitalization worldwide and China’s most valuable — to call out Apple, itself the world’s most valuable company. The hack is said to have received wide media coverage in China including a detailed report from Chinese state broadcaster CCTV.
  • “We are deeply apologetic about the inconvenience caused to our customers by these phishing scams,” Apple said in a statement reported today by The Wall Street Journal, adding that it believed that the issue as limited to “a small number of our users’ accounts.”

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Nubank Is Now Worth $4 Billion After Tencent’s $180 Million Investment

Nubank is now worth $4 billion after Tencent’s $180 million investmentJonathan Shieber / TechCrunch - 12 months ago
  • Nubank, the Brazilian financial services company, has raised $180 million from the Chinese internet giant, Tencent.
  • Tencent has long been interested in financial services startups, and with its $90 million direct investment and another $90 million investment in the secondary market, the company now has access to what is arguably the largest digital banking company in the world.
  • With the $4 billion valuation, it also makes Nubank one of the most highly valued privately held startups in Latin America.
  • News of the investment was first reported by The Information, which included the $4 billion figure.

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Tencent Backs Fintech Firm Voyager To Set Up Battle With Alibaba In The Philippines

Tencent backs fintech firm Voyager to set up battle with Alibaba in the PhilippinesJon Russell / TechCrunch - 12 months ago
  • China’s internet battle is rapidly reproducing itself in Southeast Asia.
  • The deal would bring Tencent into direct competition with arch-rival Alibaba, which entered the Philippines 18 months ago when its fintech affiliate Ant Financial invested in Mynt, a financial venture from Globe Telecom which is a competitor to Voyager.
  • Following a week of speculation, PLDT announced a deal today that sees Tencent and KKR pay up to $175 million for a minority stake in the Voyager business.
  • Fintech is rapidly becoming a key focus for startups and larger tech companies in Southeast Asia, where the internet and mobile phone ownership promises to increase digital inclusion and give the region’s collective population of more than 600 million people new ways to save and spend.

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Go-Jek Is Close To Launching A Ride-hailing Service In Singapore

Go-Jek is close to launching a ride-hailing service in SingaporeJon Russell / TechCrunch - 12 months ago
  • Indonesia’s ride-sharing startup Go-Jek plans to land in Singapore, its arch-rival Grab’s HQ, as soon as this month as its regional expansion program gains speed, TechCrunch has come to understand.
  • Go-Jek has grown to become a $5 billion business that’s backed by the likes of Google and Tencent without venturing out of Indonesia, where it original motorbike taxi-hailing app has fanned out to cover cars, on-demand services, payments and more.
  • Singapore — a far smaller market but one that’s hugely symbolic — is on its radar and Go-Jek plans to introduce a service in the country before the end of October, a source with knowledge of the plans told TechCrunch.
  • Go-Jek is currently in discussions with investors with a view to raising $2 billion to finance the next stage of its expansion.

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Spotify’s IPO Could Be A Billion-dollar Payday For Sony Music

Spotify’s IPO could be a billion-dollar payday for Sony MusicPeter Kafka / ReCode - 2 years ago
  • Spotify’s coming IPO is validation for CEO Daniel Ek, who has built a giant music streaming business.
  • And on paper, the IPO* will make Ek and his co-founder Martin Lorentzon billionaires.
  • Spotify’s “real” valuation is a moving target, but last fall the company’s shares traded hands at around $20 billion, so let’s use that number for now: It would mean Ek’s stake is worth some $1.9 billion and Lorentzon’s is worth about $2.5 billion.
  • The surprise is that Sony’s stake is so significant, and that it’s larger than its peers.

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India-based Music Streaming Service Gaana Raises $115M Led By Tencent

India-based music streaming service Gaana raises $115M led by TencentJon Russell / TechCrunch - 2 years ago
  • Chinese internet giant Tencent is continuing to put its money in India and in music streaming services after it agreed to lead a $115 million investment in India’s Gaana.
  • Gaana is a music streaming service that was started by Times Media, the company behind the Times of India newspaper and tech incubator Times Internet among other things, seven years ago.
  • The company plans to use this new capital develop artificial intelligence to create more personalized services and features for listeners.
  • Times Internet is already an existing backer and it is the other investor in the deal.

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Alibaba Moves To Gobble Up China-based Food Delivery Startup Ele.me In Full

Alibaba moves to gobble up China-based food delivery startup Ele.me in fullJon Russell / TechCrunch - 2 years ago
  • Alibaba’s 2018 investment spree looks set to continue after it made a push to buy Ele.me, the food delivery startup from China that it has invested in, in full.
  • Bloomberg reported yesterday that Alibaba plans to purchase the roughly-60 percent of Ele.me that it currently doesn’t own from the other investors, which include search giant Baidu.
  • Alibaba first invested in Ele.me in 2016 and it doubled down to lead a $1 billion investment last year.
  • The acquisition could value Ele.me at as much a $9.5 billion, according to Bloomberg, and the deal would be significant since it would once again pit Alibaba against its key rival Tencent.

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Alibaba And Tencent Wage $10 Billion Battle For Retailers

Alibaba and Tencent wage $10 billion battle for retailersPaul Sawers / VentureBeat - 2 years ago
  • China’s tech giants Alibaba Group Holding and Tencent Holdings, worth a combined $1 trillion, are on a retail investment binge, forcing merchants to choose sides amid a battle for shoppers’ digital wallets.
  • Since the start of last year, the two companies have between them spent more than $10 billion on retail-focused deals, boosting their reach online and in brick-and-mortar stores.
  • The aggressive drive, supported by large cash piles and soaring share prices, is part of a battle to win over consumers and store operators to the two firms’ competing payment, logistics, social media and big data services.
  • The result: fewer and fewer retailers left without allegiance to either Tencent or Alibaba.

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Sensor Tower: China And Japan Dominate Mobile Game Revenues In January

Sensor Tower: China and Japan dominate mobile game revenues in JanuaryDean Takahashi / VentureBeat - 2 years ago
  • When it comes to worldwide revenue in mobile games, Chinese and Japanese companies are starting to dominate the charts, according to measurement firm Sensor Tower.
  • Sony has a big hit on its hands with the role-playing game Fate/Grand Order, which took the top position from Mixi’s big hit Monster Strike.
  • Candy Crush Saga from King and Clash Royale from Supercell were the only Western games in the top 10, while Asian companies held eight of the top 10.
  • Tencent’s mobile racing title QQ Speed debuted on the chart after launching in late December, hitting No.

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Alibaba’s Online Growth Surges, Even As It Looks Offline

Alibaba’s Online Growth Surges, Even as It Looks OfflineRAYMOND ZHONG / New York TImes - 2 years ago
  • The company has lifted its recent results by offering more and better services to the vendors on its platforms.
  • The Chinese internet giant Tencent is weighing an investment in the China operations of Carrefour, the grocer and retailer headquartered in France.
  • These brick-and-mortar partners are being fitted with Alibaba’s technology.

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China And The US Are Bracing For An AI Showdown—in The Cloud

China and the US are bracing for an AI showdown—in the cloud MIT Technology Review - 2 years ago
  • Chinese and American tech giants are preparing for a showdown that may shape the future of artificial intelligence.
  • China’s cloud providers, Alibaba, Tencent, and Baidu, are getting ready to do battle with US giants Amazon, Google, and Microsoft to deliver AI online.
  • Speaking at EmTech China, an event held by MIT Technology Review in Beijing, Jian Wang, president of Alibaba’s technology committee and a senior figure at the company, predicted that cloud AI would become a major trend.
  • At the same event, Animashree Anandkumar, principal scientist at Amazon Web Services, touted the AI capabilities of her company, the largest cloud provider in the US, which already offers a number of AI services via the cloud.

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Tencent Invests In VR Maker Skydance Media

Tencent Invests In VR Maker Skydance MediaVentureBeat / UploadVR - 2 years ago
  • Skydance Media was started in 2010 by David Ellison, the son of Oracle founder Larry Ellison.
  • And in 2017, the company began branching out into games with Skydance Interactive, with a focus on virtual reality.
  • “We are thrilled and honored to be entering into a strategic partnership with Tencent, whose global reach and position within the Chinese marketplace is truly unmatched”, said Skydance CEO David Ellison in a statement.
  • The investment is part of a broader strategic partnership, which provides a global platform for project-level collaboration and will also allow Skydance to access Tencent’s expertise in Asia and gaming to further build out its presence in these markets.

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US-China Biotech Startup XtalPi Lands $15M From Google, Tencent And Sequoia

US-China biotech startup XtalPi lands $15M from Google, Tencent and SequoiaJon Russell / TechCrunch - 2 years ago
  • Google continues to increase its presence in China after it joined Sequoia China and Tencent in a $15 million investment for XtalPi, a U.S.-China biotech firm that uses artificial intelligence and computing to accelerate the development of new drugs.
  • The search giant remains blocked in China, but that hasn’t stopped it from making a series of moves in recent months. It is opening an AI lab in the country and now it has made a second significant investment in recent months by backing XtalPi, which was founded in 2014 by three Chinese MIT graduates.
  • The company has 60 staff across offices in Boston, Beijing and Shenzhen. It uses a combination of AI, quantum physics algorithms and cloud computing to predict the structure of drug molecules once they are crystalized, which it turn affects a drug’s stability and other characteristics that determine its chances of making it to market.
  • Beyond its design focus — which make the drug development process more efficient and accurate for pharma companies — XtalPi also works on drug discovery.

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Google Inks Patent Deal With Tencent

Google inks patent deal with TencentJon Russell / TechCrunch - 2 years ago
  • The terms were not disclosed, but Google said the tie-in with Tencent, which is valued at over $500 billion, covers “a broad range of products and technologies” and is “long-term.” The two firms pledged to work together on future innovation and technology.
  • Google’s core search service remains blocked in China, but this announcement follows a string of development that have seen the firm ramp up in other areas in the country.
  • On the other side, the deal is also another meaningful global exercise from Tencent. Long one of China’s most influential tech giants through its hugely profitable gaming business and massively popular WeChat service, Tencent made a series of major global moves last year with investments in Snap, Tesla and Spotify.

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Storytelling App Wattpad Raises $51M At A $398M Valuation

Storytelling app Wattpad raises $51M at a $398M valuationIngrid Lunden / TechCrunch - 2 years ago
  • Content, as they say, is king — but these days, that may be true only for as long as you can figure out a good business model to deliver it.
  • Wattpad, a storytelling and reading/viewing app that combines crowdsourced content with professionally produced material, has picked up another $51 million (C$61.25 million) in venture funding — money that it plans to use to invest in its tech (such as the machine learning that helps match its creators with consumers, and which identifies stories that are ‘trending’ and worth revisiting for more creative writing and video shooting around them as themes); and in its expansion into more formats.
  • The company has raised $117.8 million (US) to date, and post-money is valued at just under $398 million, according to PitchBook.
  • “Entertainment is in a period of disruption, and how people find and experience stories is evolving,” Allen Lau, the CEO who co-founded the company with Ivan Yuen, said in a statement.

WeChat Denies ‘storing’ Chat Histories, In Response To Criticism From Criticism From Chinese Businessman Li Shufu

BBC Technology / BBC - 2 years ago
  • In a carefully worded riposte, China's most popular messaging app WeChat, has denied "storing chat histories".
  • It follows criticism from Chinese businessman Li Shufu, who recently said the firm "must be watching all our WeChats every day".
  • In response the Tencent-owned firm said suggestions that it was watching users was "pure misunderstanding".
  • All Chinese social media platforms are required to censor public posts deemed illegal by the government.
  • Mr Li is quoted in Chinese media reports as saying he believed Tencent monitored everyone's account.
  • The high-profile businessman owns Geely Holdings which in turn owns the Volvo car brand.

Spotify’s Valuation Jumps 20% To $19 Billion In Private Trading

Reuters / VentureBeat - 2 years ago
  • The value of music streaming service Spotify, which is planning a stock market listing, has grown around 20 percent to at least $19 billion in the past few months, outperforming U.S.
  • The most recent private trades in the Swedish company have taken place at above $4,000 per share according to sources.
  • One of the sources said the recent trades were at a record-high of $4,200, valuing the firm at $19 billion or more.
  • Also supporting perceptions of Spotify’s increasing value, Tencent’s purchase of new Spotify shares implies a valuation of $5,000 per share, one of the sources said.

Nintendo Brings Wii Games To China On The Nvidia Shield

Zoey Chong / CNET - 2 years ago
  • China is one of the world's biggest markets for gaming, boasting nearly 600 million gamers -- and companies want a piece of that.Through a China-exclusive deal with Nintendo and Chinese content provider iQiyi, Nvidia is bringing its Shield device to China, GameSpot reported Tuesday.
  • Here is some gameplay of Twilight Princess running on Nvidia Shield.
  • China is big on games, as proven by Chinese tech titan, Tencent, who said last month that it earned a remarkable 18 billion yuan ($2.7 billion), contributed largely by the country's love for its game called Honour of Kings.