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Trump to threaten UK over Huawei; Kakao files binding bid for game developer NXC

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Trump to threaten UK over Huawei; Kakao files binding bid for game developer NXC

TOP NEWS

* U.S. President Donald Trump will threaten to restrict intelligence sharing between Washington and the U.K. if the British government allows Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. to build a part of the country's 5G network, London's Financial Times reported. According to officials, Trump plans to discuss the matter during his three-day visit to the U.K. Previously, leaked reports from the U.K.'s National Security Council said Huawei may be allowed to build noncore parts of the 5G data networks, despite pressure from Washington to do otherwise.

* Five companies submitted binding offers for South Korea-based NXC Corp., the holding company of online and mobile gaming publisher NEXON Co. Ltd., Reuters reported, citing Korea Economic Daily. The bidders included private equity firms KKR & Co., Bain Capital LP and MBK Partners, as well as South Korea's Kakao Corp. and mobile gaming company Netmarble Corp. Nexon founder Kim Jung-ju and his wife are selling a 98.64% stake held by them in NXC.

* A possible second listing in Hong Kong for Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. could provide the Chinese e-commerce juggernaut with a war chest to invest in domestic consumer businesses in areas where it still is fighting for market share. Alibaba could raise US$20 billion from a second public offering. The company previously raised US$25 billion when it listed on the New York Stock Exchange in September 2014.

JAPAN

* KDDI Corp. announced a strategic partnership with a Beijing-based mixed reality glass maker nreal Ltd. to create new forms of communication, and to approach spatial computing in the 5G era, including joint planning and development of smartglasses using XR technology in Japan. Under the deal, KDDI will help with the development of domestic Japanese products using the "light" smartglasses technology developed by nreal.

* Toshiba Corp. announced the divestment of its liquefied natural gas business in Texas to Total Gas & Power Asia Pvt. Ltd., the Singapore-based unit of French oil and gas company TOTAL SA. The Japanese conglomerate is expected to book a loss of ¥93 billion in the current fiscal year upon the completion of the sale.

* Toshiba Memory Holdings Corp. will procure ¥1.3 trillion primarily through bank loans from Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp., MUFG Bank Ltd. and Mizuho Bank Ltd., The Nikkei reported. The company plans to use the fund to repurchase preferred shares held by Apple Inc. and other U.S. tech companies as it prepares for stock market debut this year.

* NTT Communications Co. Ltd. said its Spanish subsidiary NTT Com Managed Services completed the acquisition of CAPSiDE, a Spanish provider of hyperscale cloud managed services. Financial details of the deal were not provided.

SOUTH KOREA

* LG Electronics Inc. launched 5G smartphone the LG V50 ThinQ in the U.S. via Sprint Corp. on May 31, Yonhap News Agency reported. The new model will be first rolled out in Atlanta, Kansas City, Dallas and Houston, and later in Chicago, Los Angeles, Phoenix and Washington, D.C.

* LG U+ plans to invest a total of 10 billion won in augmented reality content for 5G by the end of 2019, E Daily reported. The company will establish two AR-dedicated studios for content generation and increase the number of AR content it has to 1,500 pieces.

* KT Corp. signed a memorandum of understanding with Seoul National University to jointly research next-generation 6G telecommunications and autonomous driving technologies, Chosun Biz reported. KT's Institute of Convergence Technology and the university's Institute of New Media and Communications will form a consortium to conduct joint studies.

CHINA, HONG KONG AND TAIWAN

* In a move that could further complicate the ongoing trade dispute with the U.S., China will draw up a list of "unreliable" foreign entities it believes threaten domestic companies. The list will include foreign companies, organizations or individuals that do not comply with market rules, violate contracts, impose blockades on or cut off supplies to Chinese companies for noncommercial purposes, according to Ministry of Commerce Spokesman Gao Feng.

* China will initiate an investigation against FedEx Corp. for diverting Huawei Technologies' packages and failing to deliver express packages to designated addresses in China, Xinhua News reported. The authorities said the U.S. company damaged the lawful rights and interests of its clients and violated laws and regulations governing the express industry in China.

*Alibaba Group made a US$150 million investment in Knowbox, a Beijing-based online education startup, KrASIA reported, citing 36Kr. Knowbox provides online math test banks to its users, which include students, parents and teachers. The startup teaches mathematics via games and contests.

* Tencent Holdings Ltd.-owned messaging and social media app WeChat on June 1 updated the advertising revenue share policy for developers and publishers on its platform, allowing partners to earn more, KrASIa reported. Under the revised policy, developers of "creative games" who make less than 2 million yuan in daily ad revenue will get to keep 70% of their daily ad revenue. Meanwhile, those who make more than 2 million yuan in daily ad revenue will be allowed to keep 50% of their single-day ad revenue.

* Beijing ByteDance Technologies Co. Ltd. is developing educational gadgets and intends to roll out "educational hardware" in future, Bloomberg News reported, citing a statement from the company. This is the first time the Chinese company is entering into the consumer hardware realm.

* ByteDance-owned video sharing app TikTok introduced a new platform for parents to link up the accounts of their children to manage and monitor their online activities, Tencent News reported. Parents can set a daily time limit for children using the platform, and the app will create more educational videos targeting young people.

* Baidu Inc. appointed Wang Haifeng, director of its artificial intelligence group and technology group, as chief technology officer, 36kr reported.

INDIA AND SOUTH ASIA

* National Company Law Tribunal's Chandigarh branch approved the merger of Indus Towers Ltd. with Bharti Infratel Ltd., The Economic Times of India reported. Under the merger agreement, Bharti Airtel Ltd. and Vodafone Group PLC will jointly control the merged company.

* Tech Mahindra Ltd. teamed up with Cisco Systems Inc. to install Cisco's digital solutions at its Hyderabad campus, The Economic Times reported. The partnership will focus on automation, analytics and security. No financial details of the partnership were disclosed.

* HCL Technologies Ltd. is looking to set up another fan engagement platform for sports bodies after finding success with the platform it built for English Premier League side Manchester United in 2018, The Economic Times of India reported. The Indian information technology company is in talks with sports franchisees and consumer-facing businesses that may have related necessities.

SOUTHEAST ASIA

* Vertex Ventures, the venture capital arm of Singapore's sovereign wealth fund Temasek Holdings (Pte.) Ltd., will launch a US$770 million fund together with Japanese investors to nurture tech startups, Nikkei Asian Review reported. The fund will reportedly be the first Vertex fund in which foreign investors get significant involvement.

* Singapore-headquartered EV Growth closed its first fund at US$200 million, exceeding the initial target of US$150 million. The fund is supported by a number of partners including SoftBank Group Corp.

* Singapore-based fashion e-commerce company Zilingo Pte. Ltd. formed a partnership with Walt Disney Co. to develop and sell more than 20 fashion collections, Bisnis.com reported. The collections consist of more than 500 MARVEL, Disney and Star Wars inspired products.

* Thailand's Central Administrative Court dismissed the 310.72 billion baht access charge case brought on by state-owned TOT PCL against CAT Telecom PCL and its concession partners, Prachachat reported. TOT is expected to appeal the case to avoid a negligence case against its executives.

AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

* AGL Energy Ltd. has withdrawn its nonbinding offer to acquire Vocus Group Ltd. after the parties failed to agree on due diligence terms.

* New Zealand-based IT consulting firm Fusion5 MS Ltd. has entered in a partnership with Auckland-based chatbot platform Ambit, in New Zealand and Australia, bizEDGE reported.

FEATURED NEWS

Data Dispatch: Godzilla's monstrous shadow to loom large over Aladdin's lamp at box office: "Godzilla: King of the Monsters" will likely steal the box office crown from Disney's live-action "Aladdin" reboot over the weekend of May 31.

FEATURED RESEARCH

Economics of Networks: EVINE Live revives Shop HQ brand following 3 losing quarters: Home shopping network EVINE Live plans to change its name back to ShopHQ after disappointing first-quarter earnings results.

Nozomi Ibayashi, Myungran Ha, Emily Lai, Ed Eduard and Wil Hathaway contributed to this report. The Daily Dose has an editorial deadline of 7 a.m. Hong Kong time. Some external links may require a subscription. Links are current as of publication time, and we are not responsible if those links are unavailable later.