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Softbank cuts WeWork investment to US$2B; Tokyo Century pumps more funds in Grab

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Softbank cuts WeWork investment to US$2B; Tokyo Century pumps more funds in Grab

S&P Global Market Intelligence provides a roundup of recent investment deals and updates in the Asia-Pacific technology, media and communications sector.

Top news

* U.S.-based coworking giant WeWork Cos. Inc. secured an additional US$2 billion investment from SoftBank Group Corp. The amount raised is significantly less than a previously contemplated US$16 billion investment, which was dropped after the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi's Mubadala Investment Co., major contributors to the SoftBank Vision Fund, expressed concern.

* GrabTaxi Holdings Pte Ltd received additional funding from Tokyo Century Corp., taking total investments by the Japanese financial services company in the Southeast Asian ride-hailing giant to US$175 million. Tokyo Century also entered into an agreement to invest an undisclosed sum in Grab Rentals, pushing the total capital commitments received in Grab's ongoing series H round to above US$3 billion, according to DealStreetAsia.

Startup funding

* KDDI Corp. announced an investment in U.K.-based big data startup GeoSpock Ltd. Financial details were not disclosed.

* Indonesian investing app startup Ajaib raised US$2.1 million in a round led by Softbank Ventures, Tech in Asia reports.

* QUALCOMM Inc., through its venture capital arm QUALCOMM Ventures, led a 100 million yuan series B+ funding round in small cell technology company Baicells Technologies Co. Ltd. The Chinese startup will use the proceeds to further develop 5G technologies for Qualcomm.

* Tencent Holdings Ltd.-backed Youche Yihou received an investment of 200 million yuan, giving the automobile news and information provider a valuation of about 2 billion yuan, 36Kr reports.

* ABC Technology, a Beijing-based AI startup, raised US$30 million in its series B funding round, 36Kr reports. ABC Technology's clients include Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing Ltd. and Ping An Insurance (Group) Co. of China Ltd.

Capital investments

* Equinix Inc. plans to build its fourth data center in Singapore. The company will invest US$85 million, with the data center scheduled to open in the fourth quarter of 2019.

* Information Services International-Dentsu Ltd. invested in personal data bank company My Data Intelligence Inc., a unit of Japanese advertising giant Dentsu Inc. Under the transaction, Information Services International acquired 25% of shares of My Data Intelligence through private equity placement. Financial details were not disclosed.

* Foxconn Technology Co. Ltd. plans to expand a production facility in India to start assembling X-model Apple Inc. iPhones there in 2019, Reuters reported, citing a source with knowledge of the matter. The Taiwanese company intends to spend US$356 million to expand its plant in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu.

Other funding

* Korea Post will form a 1.2 trillion won fund along with other private entities to invest in 5G, artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicle and big data technologies, Digital Times reports. The KP-INNO Fund will be used to nurture small and medium sized companies with relevant potential.

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