The Asian ride-hailing business hailed big venture capital bucks in September.
Not long after Uber surrendered the China market to its local rival Didi Chuxing, Singapore-based Grab raised $750 million in a series F. Currently operating in six countries in Southeast Asia, Grab is poised to become the region’s own version of Uber.
The round was led by existing investor Softbank Capital, which in 2014 led the firm’s $250 million series D. Softbank is also a backer of Didi Chuxing, although not a prominent investor. Its entry in Grab is relatively early. Grab is currently valued at $3 billion, and should it eventually grow to Uber and Didi scales, Softbank will be the envy of VCs across the world.
Speaking of Didi, the Uber defeater in China received $120 million in fresh capital from new investor Foxconn, the Taiwan-based electronic maker known for manufacturing most of the world’s smartphones. The deal amount is the second highest recorded in September, but appears negligible compared to the $10.1 billion Didi has already raised. Bloomberg reported the funding would buy Foxconn 0.355% of Didi.
(To make things more confusingly intertwined, Didi is also reportedly an investor in Grab.)
In September Foxconn also invested $125 million in Tink Labs, a Hong Kong-based startup that provides mobile device service in hotels. Foxconn’s recent investing history signals a strong interest in venture capital. Since 2014, the manufacturer has invested a total of $1.6 billion in 23 startups, ten times more than the total venture investments between 2008 and 2013, according to Crunchbase records.
Other notable funding activities of the month include a big flow of venture capital in Asian startups (six out of ten deals), continuing vibrancy in fintech and SaaS and big-dollar deals in unanticipated sectors like wearable tech and hotel chains.
Here are the 10 biggest venture capital deals in September:
1) Lead Investor: Softbank Capital
Industry: Ride Hailing
Funding Amount: $750 million, Series F
2) Lead Investor: Foxconn Technology Group -- FIH Mobile Unit
Startup: Tink Labs
Location: Hong Kong
Industry: Mobile service, Hospitality
Funding Amount: $125 million
3) Lead Investor: Foxconn Technology Group -- Foxteq Holdings
Startup: Didi Chuxing
Industry: Ride Hailing
Funding Amount: $120 million, undisclosed round
4) Investors: Intel Capital, Fidelity Investments, Alexa Fund
Startup: Thalmic Labs
Industry: Wearable Tech
Funding Amount: $120 million, Series B
5) Lead Investor: Warburg Pincus
Location: Seattle, Washington
Funding Amount: $119 million, Series C
6) Lead Investor: Gulf Islamic Investments LLC
Location: San Mateo, California
Industry: SaaS, Enterprise Software
Funding Amount: $88 million, Series D
7) Investor: Undisclosed
Industry: Crowdfunding Platform
Funding Amount: $72 million, Series C
8) Lead Investor: Goldman Sachs
Startup: Red Planet Hotels
Funding Amount: $70 million
9) Lead Investor: CCB International Asset Management
Industry: P2P Lending
Funding Amount: $70 million, Series C
10) Investor: Wellington Management
Startup: Defy Media
Location: New York, New York
Industry: Digital Media
Funding Amount: $70 million, Series B
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