Latin America roundup: Neobanks raise $205M+; Softbank backs VTEX

Argentina’s Ualá became the most recent Latin American fintech to receive a growth-stage funding ($150 million) from Asian investors, Tencent and Softbank.  This marks Tencent’s second round of investment in Ualá, the first coming in April 2019. Tencent also invested $180M in Brazil’s leading neobank, Nubank in 2018. With Ualá, Tencent and Softbank will join a […]

SoftBank-backed Getaround is raising $200M at a $1.5B+ valuation

Getaround, a car-sharing platform and winner of TechCrunch Disrupt New York Battlefield 2011, will enter the unicorn club with a roughly $200 million equity financing. The deal values Getaround, founded in 2009, at $1.7 billion, according to an estimate provided by PitchBook. Getaround declined to comment, citing internal policy on “funding speculation.” “Getaround and our […]

Didi Chuxing and oil giant BP team up to build electric vehicle charging infrastructure in China

Ridesharing and transportation platform Didi Chuxing announced today that it has formed a joint venture with BP, the British gas, oil and energy company, to build electric-vehicle charging infrastructure in China. The charging stations will be available to Didi and non-Didi drivers. The news of Didi and BP’s joint venture comes one week after Didi […]

Toyota invests $600 million in Didi, with the two setting up a new joint venture for driver services

Didi Chuxing announced today that it has received new investment totaling $600 million from Toyota Motor Corporation. As part of the deal, the two companies will also set up a joint venture with GAC Toyota Motor to provide vehicle-related services to drivers on Didi’s ride-sharing platform. GAC Toyota itself is a joint venture between Toyota […]

Microsoft in talks to invest in SoftBank’s second Vision Fund

SoftBank is said to be preparing the announcement of a $40 billion investment in its second Vision Fund, according to a new report from The Wall Street Journal. News of the mammoth investment comes after weeks of rumors the Japanese telecom giant was struggling to secure capital for its second fund, citing lukewarm reception from […]

Bosch launches cloud-connected battery management to extend the life of EV batteries

Bosch is bringing to market a new cloud-connected software service to manage and monitor the battery life of electric vehicles. “Bosch is connecting electric-vehicle batteries with the cloud. Its data-based services mean we can substantially improve batteries’ performance and extend their service life,” said Dr. Markus Heyn, member of the board of management of Robert […]

Meituan, Alibaba, and the new landscape of ride-hailing in China

Instead of switching between apps to secure a ride during rush hour, people in China can now hail from different companies using a single app. Some of the country’s largest internet companies — including ride-hailing giant Didi itself — are placing bets on this type of aggregation service. The nascent model is reminiscent of a […]

From seed to Series A: Scaling a startup in Latin America today

Nathan Lustig Contributor Nathan Lustig is an entrepreneur and managing partner at Magma Partners, a seed-stage investment fund in Santiago, Chile. More posts by this contributor Latin America is the next stage in the race for dominance in the ride-hailing market Latin America’s Movile is quietly building a mobile empire It’s not easy to raise […]

Splyt wants to connect the world’s ride-hailing apps for easy international roaming

The vision of a universal global ride-hailing service is over. Uber’s decision to exit markets like China, Southeast Asia and Russia coupled with the failure of its rivals to develop a proposed roaming system, means that global travelers must install multiple apps if they are to take advantage of on-demand taxis. That’s unless a little-known startup […]

Travel activities platform Klook raises $225M led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund

We recently noted that SoftBank’s Vision Fund has stepped up its deal-making in Asia this year, and today it added a new company to its roster: travel services platform Klook. Hong Kong-based Klook announced today that it has raised a $225 million round led by the Vision Fund with participation from existing investors. The deal […]