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The European Commission has today released its draft budget for its next financial period to start after 2020 with its draft plans for about $100bn for innovation funding (nice analysis by Science Business here).
Last month, Ant Financial was reported to have closed a jaw-dropping $10bn funding round at a $150bn that would have been the largest ever round at the largest ever valuation for a private company. It turns out, those reports were wrong – in fact, Ant Financial has raised a mind-blowing $14bn from investors including two Singapore government-owned entities, GIC and Temasek.
Geo-Jade Petroleum has led a series D round for Caogen Touzi, which also featured a range of unnamed, existing investors.
Bigo, a livestreaming platform based in Singapore, has now raised $272m in series D funding to further drive its growth. The round was led by another video platform, YY.
Lime (previously known as LimeBike) will hope that a $250m it is reportedly trying to raise from investors including GV will help it stay ahead of competitors. The company was previously rumoured to be seeking a total of $500m in equity and debt, but it appears the latter financing has been put on hold for unknown reasons.
Hyperchain Technologies, which has raised $234m in a round led by real estate developer Xinhu Zhongbao.
Dataminr, which has developed technology to detect, classify and determine the significance of public information on social media in real time, has now raised more than $380m after attracting $221m from as-yet unnamed backers. Fidelity and Credit Suisse previously backed a $130m series D in 2015.
Honest Company, the ethical household, beauty and baby products business launched by actress Jessica Alba, appears to be on an upwards trajectory again after receiving $200m from L Catterton, the private equity firm co-founded by LVMH.
Alibaba has purchased a 10% stake in Babytree that valued the e-commerce platform at $2.2bn.
Sina has co-led a $103m funding round for Pintec, which focuses on retail financial services.
Autohome has made a strategic investment in used car auction platfom Tiantianpaiche, whose backers already include SoftBank, SIG, Tencent and Bitauto.
Western Digital has joined a consortium of investors led by BlackRock for a $93m series D round in Qumulo.
Pivotal BioVenture Partners and Roche have both returned to back a series C round for SutroVax, which has also added TPG, Medicxi and Foresite Capital to its shareholders.
Volkswagen and Access Industries have supported Gett’s latest funding round that valued the ride hailing business at $1.4bn.
Kunlun-backed Nashwork has attracted $78m in a series B+ round backed by Sino-Ocean Group.
Bertelsmann Asia Investments was among the returning investors in a $70m series B+ round, which followed an initial $100m series B in February this year.
Lilly Asia Ventures and existing investor Alexandria Venture Investments have taken part in a $65m series C round for metabolic disease treatment developer Metacrine.
BlueVine, backed by Rakuten and Citi, will use the money to expand its product offering and accelerate recruitment of its research and development team.
Avi Networks has received $60m in an oversubscribed series B round that featured long-time partner Cisco’s corporate venturing arm as a new investor.
Kuaishou has acquired AcFun, which was reported earlier this year to have wound down but had in fact experienced a major server crash.
Neon Therapeutics is among the latest to file for an initial public offering, hoping to raise $115m to support several clinical trials. The listing would provide exits to shareholders including Pharmstandard International and Access Industries, though only Access is among the larger shareholders.
Domo, a business optimisation software provider backed by enterprise software developer Salesforce and marketing firm WPP, that is targeting $100m in proceeds. The company is using the offering as a way of avoiding reduced operations – despite emerging from stealth with $200m in series D funding in 2015, it has been making heavy losses and money is running out fast.
Neuronetics has filed for an $86.3m initial public offering on Nasdaq that will offer exits to corporates Pfizer, General Electric and Ascension.
Xiaomi’s eagerly awaited initial public offering, which is already noteworthy for its $10bn target, became even more interesting this week when it emerged that the company will undertake a dual listing, issuing the majority of shares in Hong Kong as expected and offering up to 30% in mainland China through Chinese Depositary Receipts (CDRs).
Marley Spoon, a Germany-based on-demand food delivery service backed by e-commerce group Rocket Internet, is gearing up for a $53m initial public offering… in Australia. The country is one of Marley Spoon’s largest markets and the one where it has actually broken even.
Pfizer isn’t exactly a new player in the corporate venturing space, having launched its Pfizer Venture Investments unit in 2004, but the pharmaceutical giant is clearly embracing the current boom by putting another $600m towards its CVC efforts – with approximately $150m of that dedicated to neuroscience startups.
Lockheed Martin follows closely behind today by doubling the size of its CVC arm, Lockheed Martin Ventures, to $200m. A key interest for the unit will be early-stage startups in the areas of sensor technologies, autonomy, artificial intelligence and cybertechnology. It’s already revealed a first investment from the new cash, too: NTopology, a US-based developer of computer-aided design software.
Real estate is ripe for disruption by technology startups and that’s led property manager JLL to enter the corporate venturing space with a $100m commitment to its new unit JLL Spark – which was revealed this week but actually founded last year.
The ride hailing firm has launched Grab Ventures, which is set to make eight to 10 investments over the next two years, and established an accelerator called Velocity.
Huobi and Kiwoom Securities have joined forces with NewMargin Capital to launch a blockchain-focused investment fund.
Veolia, La Capitale, Groupe ADP, Ubisoft and Unisys are among the limited partners in White Star’s second fund, which has achieved a $180m close.
Ripple will pour $50m into R&D at 17 academic institutions, including institutions in the US, UK, India and Brazil.
UC Riverside has partnered the Know Hub Chile partnership to help Chile conduct better research and tech transfer.
“Funky Chunk” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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