Tag Archives: China

China’s Tsinghua Unigroup snags $22 billion

Commentary

China is now taking an ambitious step towards becoming the world’s leading chipmaker. Last week, Tsinghua Unigroup, China’s top chip manufacturer, has amassed a staggering $22 billion of financing from China Development Bank. According to reports, the funds will be used for acquisitions as well as building a world-class conductor industry. Long been accused of grabbing global market shares in many industries, China’s rapidly growing semiconductor industry could pose a threat to American and Japanese chipmakers. According to Gartner, China will be a promising market for semiconductor investments starting this year as state-held companies (like Tsinghua Unigroup) aim to become strong players in the global semiconductor market.

Poly Group invests $400 million in Didi Chuxing 

Commentary

Competition in the ride-hailing industry heats up as Didi Chuxing, Uber’s main rival in China, raised $400 million from Poly Group. Poly Group is one of China’s state-owned trading and real-estate conglomerates. This latest fundraising leaves Didi with a valuation of around $27.6 billion. Didi Chuxing, formerly known as Didi Kuaidi, dominates the Chinese ride-hailing market at more than 14 million rides per day. In addition to the equity fundraising, China Merchants Bank recently led a syndicated loan of $2.5 billion and China Life Insurance lent $300 million in long-term debt to Didi Chuxing. The company now has more than $10 billion in disposable funds which it intends to use to ramp up its competition with Uber. 

Ele.me raises $1.25 billion from Alibaba and Ant Financial

Commentary
Alibaba is on an investment spree. After paying $1 billion to acquire a controlling stake in Lazada, the Chinese ecommerce giant contributed $900 million to Ele.me’s latest funding round. Ant Financial, an affiliate of Alibaba, contributed $350 million. Ele.me, which translates to “Are you hungry now?”, is a food delivery platform based in Shanghai. It previously raised $630 million from Didi Kuaidi at a $3 billion valuation in August. Its total funding is now $2.34 billion, making it China’s third most funded startup.

You can read about the funding here.

Alibaba acquires the South China Morning Post

Commentary
The publishing world is abuzz over the purchase of Hong Kong’s iconic newspaper the South China Morning Post (SCMP) by Chinese ecommerce giant Alibaba. The $266 million deal includes the 112-year-old English-language newspaper and other media properties such as outdoor advertising, digital assets and magazines. According to analysts, the acquisition of SCMP is a political move. By owning SCMP, Alibaba aims to improve and reshape the image of China, directly addressing what it calls the “wrong” portrayal of their home country in Western media. In short, the acquisition is about making China look good in the eyes of Western readers. Although the newspaper is not covered by China’s strict censorship rules, the acquisition will most likely heighten self-censorship, specially on controversial political issues.