Ecosystem Roundup: Mynt, Bitkub become unicorns; ShopBack acquires hoolah; Sociolla, Carsome in talks for big funding

Bitkub becomes unicorn after SCBx’s acquisition of its majority stake for US$536M
Bitkub’s services include cryptocurrency and digital assets exchange, blockchain solution and ICO advisory service, education, and venture capital investment; SCB intends to work closely with Bitkub as a business partner, develop digital asset businesses through new business models to create long-term added value.

Mynt becomes Philippines’s first fintech unicorn after a US$300M financing round
Investors include Warburg Pincus, Insight Partners, Globe Telecom, and Ayala, Bow Wave Capital; This round brings Mynt’s valuation to over US$2B and it looks to launch “buy now, pay later” products within the year.

Carsome eyeing US$200M raise before US listing in 2022
The startup is reportedly currently working with an adviser and plans to complete the raise in the coming weeks; The company also faces fierce competition from Singapore’s Carro, which also went past the US$1B valuation mark after raising US$360M in June; In September, Carsome raised US$170M in a round that boosted its valuation to US$1.3B.

Vidio raises its first external funding of US$150M from Affinity Equity Partners
This round marks the company’s first external funding round; It has a pre-money valuation of US$750M as the funding round inched it closer to a unicorn status; Up until September, Vidio has secured 62 million subscribers.

Sociolla in talks to raise up to US$150M at unicorn valuation
The company has already roped in three new global investors — a PE firm, a sovereign wealth fund and a growth fund; Its existing backers L Catterton, Temasek, EV Growth and Jungle Ventures are participating, says a DealStreetAsia report.

ShopBack acquires hoolah to strengthen ‘buy now, pay later’ offerings in Asia Pacific
hoolah will expedite its growth by extending its BNPL offering to ShopBack’s over 8K merchants and 30M shoppers across 9 markets in Asia Pacific. Meanwhile, ShopBack will further strengthen its shopping tools and rewards suite by providing shoppers with a convenient and flexible payment option at checkout.

Co-founders inject US$48M into Lightnet to grow its blockchain-powered global remittance solutions
Lightnet leverages smart contract and DLT to tap into “a trillion US dollar” global remittance market, connecting existing financial systems with its network of cash agents and wallets.

Una Brands nets US$15M Series A to acquire new e-commerce brands in Asia
Lead investors are White Star Capital and Alpha JWC; Ninja Van co-founder Alvin Teo also co-invested; Una Brands, which focuses on e-commerce brands with a revenue of US$1-50M each, has acquired 15+ brands since its inception in 2020.

True Global Ventures (TGV) injects US$10M into NFT metaverse game The Sandbox
TGV is a DLT equity fund that targets blockchain startups operating in entertainment, infrastructure, financial services, data analytics, and AI, focusing on late-stage Series B and C companies; TGV will invest in 10-20 companies with cheque sizes of US$3-10M.

Quest Ventures and ShipFocus launch maritime fund
The fund will issue cheques between SGD250K and SGD1M in seed and Series A companies; The fund will back startups that are creating solutions for the entire shipping supply chain such as digital operating systems, products and services that reduce shipping emissions autonomous vehicles and drones; It has already invested in underwater robot startup BeeX.

MyCloudFulfillment raises US$7.4M Series B to expand to neighbouring countries
Investors are JWD Group and SCB 10X; In H1 2021, the e-commerce fulfilment company recorded an average of 300K orders a month and also added a new warehouse in Min Buri with more than 6.5K square meters of space.

Cloud kitchen startup CloudEats raises US$5M in Series A
Investors include Vulpes Investment, Gobi Partners, BAce Capital, Intera Investments Limited, and GMA Ventures; CloudEats is set to launch its presence in Vietnam in November this year; It also aims to develop new F&B brands to follow its own Burger Beast.

Ex-Tokopedia AVP’s Astro attracts US$4.5M to expand ’15-min e-commerce delivery’ service in Jakarta
Investors are Global Founders Capital, AC Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and Goodwater Capital; Astro offers more than 1,000 products ranging from daily necessities (snacks, fresh fruit, and vegetables) to emergency OTC medicines.

Nanofilm founder pours US$1.5M into SG logistics firm uParcel
uParcel runs a delivery service that maps out optimal routes for riders to deliver several packages; It offers one-hour, three-hour, six-hour, and next-day delivery options for its users in Singapore, as well as Johor Bahru and Klang Valley in Malaysia.

BeeX scores 7-figure USD seed financing to develop autonomous underwater inspection robots
Investors are Cap Vista, Quest Ventures-Maritime Fund, IMC Ventures, SEEDS Capital, and the NUS; BeeX claims its robot enables better data and insights into critical large scale infrastructure like offshore wind, floating solar and aquaculture farms.

Meet the first batch of startups that received investment from Accelerating Asia’s US$20M Fund II
The startups are Chat Genie, Dana Fintech, Ellegra, Giftpack.ai, Mayani, Sohopathi, Supply Line, VIFO, and Z-Waka; Fund II aims to bridge the gap between seed and pre-Series A investments for startups with untapped potential.

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