Brief: JD’s financial arm banks $2b funding, Indonesia lifts Tik Tok ban

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JD’s financial arm pulls in US$2 billion (China). JD Finance, which is on course for an initial public offering, has reportedly doubled its valuation to US$18 billion after the fundraising. Backers of this latest round included CICC Capital, China Securities, Citic Capital, and Bank of China Group Investment, but more investors could be join later. The financial unit of the online retailer offers a range of services including consumer credit and wealth management. (Reuters)

Tik Tok ban reversed after Toutiao makes concessions (Indonesia). The Ministry of Communication & Information Technology said the government had unblocked the video-sharing app after developer Toutiao agreed to censor “all negative content.” The Chinese company has also committed to strengthen the app’s security mechanisms, implement additional restrictions on users aged 14 to 18, and open an office in the country. Tik Tok was banned last week because of content deemed to be a bad influence on young Indonesians. (Reuters)

Other news

Tesla to set up Shanghai factory (China). The American automaker has gotten the green light from local authorities to open a new plant in the country’s largest city. The news came as Tesla raised prices after Beijing slapped new tariffs on US-made cars as part of an ongoing trade war between the two global powers. (Reuters)

Cainiao pours US$290 million into short-distance delivery platform (China). Alibaba’s logistics affiliate has become a controlling shareholder in Dianwoda as a result of the investment. (China Money Network)

Meituan Dianping VC arm racks up US$300 million for investments (China). Longzhu Capital raised the capital from its parent as well as Tencent, China Merchants Capital, and others to invest in catering, new retail, and local services. Longzhu’s portfolio includes popular Chinese tea shop chain HeyTea and bakery Bliss Cake. (China Money Network)

Self-driving startup Pony.ai raises US$102 million (China). The round was led by ClearVue Partners and Fidelity International’s Eight Roads. The new funds will help Pony.ai grow its team in China and the US, develop partnerships, and speed up plans for its autonomous driving fleet and monetization. (South China Morning Post)

Xiaoming Bike owes users US$120 million in deposits (China). Details of the money owed emerged as the startup undergoes bankruptcy proceedings. Founded in mid-2016, Xiaoming is among a cohort of Chinese bike-sharing businesses that have suffered from severe cash crunch issues. (TechNode)

Shop101 secures US$5 million in series A fundraise (India). The round was led by Stellaris Ventures Partners, with Vy Capital also participating. Shop101, which enables vendors to sell through WhatsApp, Facebook, and Instagram, plans to use the fresh proceeds to hire, scale and build products. (Livemint)

Bambu nails US$3 million series A (Singapore). The B2B robo-advisor has secured the funding from Franklin Templeton Investments, Singapore-based Octava, and Japanese fintech investor Mamoru Taniya. Operating across Asia and the Americas, the two-year-old startup will use the capital to further drive its proprietary AI research effort and recruit new staff. (Bambu)

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