Aspire raises $32.5M to help SMEs secure fast finance in Southeast Asia

Aspire, a Singapore-based startup that helps SMEs secure working capital, has raised $32.5 million in a new financing round to expand its presence in several Southeast Asian markets. The Series A round for the one-and-a-half-year-old startup was funded by MassMutual Ventures Southeast Asia. Arc Labs and existing investors Y Combinator — Aspire graduated from YC […]

Grab raises more money — again

Southeast Asia’s highest-capitalized startup is sitting on even more money from investors today after ride-hailing Grab announced it has raised $300 million from Invesco. The deal takes Singapore-based Grab $7.5 billion raised to date. The money is part of its ongoing — feels-like-everlasting — Series H round which was started last June via a $1 […]

Food delivery startup Dahmakan eats up $5M for expansion in Southeast Asia

It’s harvest season for Southeast Asia’s full-stack food delivery startups. Following on from Singapore’s Grain raising $10 million, so Malaysia-based Dahmakan today announced a $5 million financing round of its own. The money takes the startup to $10 million raised to date — its last round as $2.6 million last year — and it comes […]

Chat app Line is adding Snap-style disappearing stories

Facebook cloning Snap to death may be old news, but others are only just following suit. Line, the Japanese messaging app that’s popular in Asia, just became the latest to clone Snap’s ephemeral story concept. The company announced today that it is adding stories that disappear after 24 hours to its Timeline feature, a social network-like […]

Singapore’s Grain, a profitable food delivery startup, pulls in $10M for expansion

Cloud kitchens are the big thing in food delivery, with ex-Uber CEO Travis Kalanick’s new business one contender in that space, with Asia, and particularly Southeast Asia, a major focus. Despite the newcomers, a more established startup from Singapore has raised a large bowl of cash to go after regional expansion. Founded in 2014, Grain […]

Alibaba-backed facial recognition startup Megvii raises $750 million

One of China’s most ambitious artificial intelligence startups, Megvii, more commonly known for its facial recognition brand Face++, announced Wednesday that it has raised $750 million in a Series E funding round. Founded by three graduates from the prestigious Tsinghua University in China, the eight-year-old company specializes in applying its computer vision solutions to a […]

Kargo is disrupting logistics in Myanmar, one of the world’s most challenging countries

Founders in Seattle recently bemoaned a lack of capital and support when compared to Silicon Valley — what about those building startups in more remote markets? Kargo, a company that takes the spirit of Uber and brings it to the disorganized world of trucking, has raised a SG$800,000 (US$580,000) round of funding, giving TechCrunch an […]

Grocery delivery startup Honestbee is running out of money and trying to sell

Honestbee, the online grocery delivery service in Asia, is nearly out of money and trying to offload its business. The company has held early conversations with a number of suitors in Asia, including ride-hailing giants Grab and Go-Jek, over the potential acquisition of part, or all, of its business, according to two industry sources with […]

Go-Jek brings in Misfit co-founder and ex-Facebook head to lead Vietnam business

Ambitious ride-hailing startup Go-Jek’s Southeast Asia expansion plan suffered a blow when it lost the leadership team behind its business in Vietnam, but now it has replaced them with the former head of Facebook in the country. Christy Trang Le, who led Facebook’s business in Vietnam for nine months before quitting for family reasons in […]

Grab is talking to Ant Financial and PayPal about spinning out its financial services business

Grab, the $16 billion-valued ride-hailing firm that acquired Uber’s Southeast Asia business last year, is in talks with Alibaba’s Ant Financial and PayPal as it considers spinning out of its financial services unit to double down on its non-transportation business, TechCrunch has learned. The seven-year-old company’s coming-of-age moment was a deal to buy Uber’s regional […]