Proptech, Logistics, Tech crackdowns in China | Trusted Bytes News

Ep 3: PropTech, logistics, a look at tech crackdowns in China. Also, what’s happening in Edtech in Asia?

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Hey there everyone and welcome back to the Trusted Bytes podcast! Trusted Bytes is a weekly podcast where we bring the highlights from the week's news in business, along with insights, ideas, and emerging trends, and with a lens on Asia. I’m your host Adrian Koh. If you like your news distilled like this, subscribe to us on YouTube or on any of your favourite podcasting services.

This week: PropTech, logistics, a look at tech crackdowns in China. Also, what’s happening in Edtech in Asia? Let’s get to the news!

Proptech is all the rage this week with Singapore real estate startup PropertyGuru acquiring REA group’s Malaysian and Thai entities. This adds to PropertyGuru’s acquisition of Vietnam’s Batdongsan three years ago, and extends it coverage across Southeast Asia. The deal is said to be worth US$11.6M. Not to be outdone, rival company said that it had doubled its sales bookings in 2020 and was looking to likewise expand. The property tech space in Southeast Asia is booming across the region, especially in Vietnam. On a related note, Vietnam is really emerging from the pandemic as a winner on many fronts, and investors are pushing more checks into startup scene.

The logistics sector is also looking to be a hotbed of activity, with India’s Delhivery (I love that name) raising US$277M ahead of its IPO. Thai logistics firm Flash express also said it raised US$150M ahead of its regional expansion. With the global pandemic raging, investment money is pouring into Logistics which is getting much a needed boost. We’re seeing how supply chains are transforming rapidly, as firms look to build more resilience and capacity to deal with the surging demand from the e-commerce boom. Many of these firms are looking also to digitalise and connect various parts of the supply chain, as the whole industry goes through a much overdue platformisation.

In China, government regulations are upending the IPO plans of yet another sector – this time, education startups. Like many technology companies, edtech startups saw a boost during the Covid-19 pandemic, drawing over US$10B of funding scale to the insatiable demand for extra schooling. Chinese State media issued warnings over predatory practices and reckless pricing from edtech firms. Government education agencies were said to be dedicating resources to oversee the private education platforms. The Government’s clampdown on excesses in the tech sector has so far seen leading firms lose over US$800 billion in value from their peaks in February 2021.

And while the latest scrutiny from the Chinese government has stonewalled the plans of edtech firms to IPO, companies like Alibaba and Tencent are still investing heavily in solving problems in education, in helping students obtain high speed internet access to overseas schools websites, by offering ways to circumvent the slow speeds from China’s Great Fire Wall. Education technology is also seeing an interesting bump in activity in Asia, with Indian startup Unacademy pulling in as much as US$400M for its most recent round to expand.

So that's all the time we have for now. Check in with us again next week for more highlights from the news from Trusted Bytes. If you like what Trusted Bytes is a production of Trusted Services.

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