Bike-sharing giant ofo receives USD 700 million for Series E led by Alibaba
Founder: Dai Wei
Founded in: 2015
Financing status: RMB 4.8 billion (USD 700 million) Series E round in 2017
Bike-sharing giant ofo on Thursday received USD 700 million for its Series E financing round led by Alibaba for global expansion.
ofo is a bike-sharing startup that launched in 2015 in Beijing, and provides users with bicycle rental services in China and some other countries. This financing round is the largest known financing by a bike-sharing company, overtaking a USD 600 million round by Mobike last month as previously reported.
To date, ofo and Mobike are the two largest bike-sharing startups in China with both startups closing Series E financing rounds to start global expansion plans. Expanding globally is essential for their survival as there are currently too many bike-sharing companies in China competing for market share. Mobike and ofo have taken the lead in capturing China’s first and second-tier cities with the help of venture capitals. However, as some fourth and fifth-tier cities in China are not so receptive with innovations based on the Internet yet, it will slow down their pace of development if they continue to compete in these cities.
Before this financing round, ofo amassed at least USD 650 million funding and obtained an estimated valuation of about USD 2 billion. This Series E financing round was led by Alibaba, Hony Capital and Citic Private Equity, with its earlier investors DiDi and DST Global also taking part in this financing round.
ofo is targeting an expansion to place 20 million rental bicycles in 20 countries by the end of this year. The company claims that it has 6.5 million bicycles available in 150 cities. In addition, it will install smart locks to its bicycles to form an IoT system to aid in ofo’s further development.
Big data and AI based medical tech company Linking Med receives undisclosed Series A in millions of USD
Founder: Zhang Ye
Founded in: 2016
Financing status: 2017 Series A round amounting to tens of millions in RMB (a few million USD)
Big data and AI based medical tech company Linking Med on Wednesday received an undisclosed Series A financing round in millions of USD to recruit more talents that specialize in big data technology.
Linking Med is a medical tech company based on big data and AI technologies that provides customers with treatment targeting tumors.
Unlike other companies that offer treatment based on medical imaging technologies, Linking Med focuses on radiation therapy for tumors. First, it automatically outlines the target section in 10 to 20 minutes based on its AI algorithms. Then, it automatically makes a plan for radiotherapy and surgical procedures. Finally, doctors need to check and make some fine tuning to make sure that the procedures fit the patients. The success rate of its radiation treatments is increased to more than 60 percent as compared to normal treatments.
Founded in 2016 in Beijing, it currently partners with hospitals and some research institutions to improve the accuracy of its treatments. It also combines the latest technologies to facilitate its development process.
This Series A financing round was from Linear Venture. The capital will be used to recruit new talents to expand its big data and AI team, as well as acquire new partners to promote its services.
(Top photo from ofo.so)