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Chinese Bike-Sharing Startup Mobike Raises New Funds From Temasek and Hillhouse

Chinese Bike-Sharing Startup Mobike Raises New Funds From Temasek and Hillhouse

Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund Temasek Holdings, and investment management firm Hillhouse Capital. This would bring its total funding to date reportedly to over $400 million, according to Chinese research firm Trustdata. The new funding comes after Mobike’s recent expansion into Singapore, and a little over a month after it raised $215 million in a series Series D financing round led by Chinese internet giant Tencent and leading private equity firm Warburg Pincus. Other investors in Mobike include Taiwanese electronics giant Foxconn, China’s largest travel company Ctrip, global leading private equity firm TPG, China’s leading hotel operator Huazhu Hotels Group, and venture capital firm Sequoia China, Bertelsmann AG, Panda Capital, Temasek’s unit Vertex Ventures, Sinovation Ventures, Joy Capital and HongZhuo Capital. Mobike was the first company in the world to develop smart bike-sharing technology. It began trial operations in Shanghai at the end of 2015, and officially launched in Shanghai in April 2016. The company was founded by former journalist Hu Weiwei, and co-founded with former Uber China executive Davis Wang, and auto industry veteran Joe Xia. “In just 10 months, Mobike has grown to serving more than 10 million users across 21 cities, and in that time, people across China have taken more than 200 million Mobike rides,” said Wang, co-founder and CEO of Mobike. Mobike’s mission is to bring more smart bikes to more cities, using its innovative technology to make cycling the most convenient and environmentally friendly transport choice for urban residents. Using specially designed bikes equipped with GPS and proprietary smart-lock technology, Mobike enables users of its smartphone app to find a bike near them and unlock it using their smartphones. After reaching their destination, users park their bike by the roadside and lock it, automatically making the bike available to other Mobike users nearby. Payment is automatically calculated and deducted from the user’s Mobike account. According to recent statistics released by Trustdata, by the end of last year, China’s bike-sharing monthly active users (MAU) reached 4.32 million. Mobike achieved 72.5 percent of the market share, accounting for more than 3.13 million MAU, adding that as of last December, “Mobike took the crown, followed by Ofo, Youon Bike and Black Bird Bike,” becoming the top four bike-sharing apps in China. Mobike also signed an exclusive strategic partnership with Foxconn Technology last month, “in a move to double its annual bicycle production capacity to more than 10 million units,” China Daily reported. Investment firm Hillhouse Capital was founded in 2005 and is led by its CEO Lei Zhang, who worked with the $20 billion Yale Endowment and a global emerging market fund covering South Africa, Southeast Asia and China. The firm manages capital for university endowments, foundations, sovereign wealth funds, pensions and family offices. China Renaissance acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Mobike. As of December 2016, China Renaissance has completed more than 420 transactions with over USD 80 billion in total deal value. The firm is headquartered in Beijing and maintains offices in Shanghai, Shenzhen, Hong Kong and New York, employing approximately 500 professionals.]]>

Calpine $CPN to Acquire Noble Americas Energy Solutions for $900M

Calpine $CPN to Acquire Noble Americas Energy Solutions for $900M

Calpine Corp. (NYSE: CPN) said it agreed to acquire San Diego-based Noble Americas Energy Solutions, one of the top energy retailers in the US, from Hong Kong-based Noble Group (SGX: N21), one of the top three independent global LNG traders, for $900 million, consisting of a purchase price of $800 million plus an estimated $100 million of net working capital at closing. Calpine is America’s largest generator of electricity from natural gas and geothermal resources. Its fleet of 84 power plants in operation or under construction represents more than 27,000 megawatts of generation capacity, serving customers in 20 states and Canada. The move comes after the resignation of Noble Group’s CEO Yusuf Alireza, and his replacement by William Randall and Jeff Frase, who were appointed as Co-CEOs, in late May, at which time Noble Americas was put up for sale, as previously reported by ExitHub. Alireza, the former co-president of Goldman Sachs in Asia, had joined Noble in 2012. Noble Group was accused last year, during his tenure, of overstating its assets by billions of dollars, seeing its market value drop by nearly 75%, and its debt downgraded to junk status. “The sale of Noble Americas substantially completes the $2 billion capital raising initiative that we announced in June,” said Frase and Randall. “With this divestiture, Noble will continue to reduce debt while also funding growth opportunities in our high return businesses.” “We are excited to be acquiring the best commercial and industrial direct energy sales platform in the U.S. The acquisition of this well-regarded organization known for providing sophisticated customers with highly customized products is a natural fit with Calpine’s customer-centric culture and will allow us to build upon the success we have experienced since our entry into retail last year through the Champion Energy platform,” said Thad Hill, Calpine’s president and chief executive. “In addition to expanding our retail customer sales channels and product offerings, we will more than double the volume of retail load we are capable of serving across the country from our complementary wholesale power generation fleet.” “Financially, this transaction is highly cash flow and credit accretive, given a rapidly amortizing bridge loan, the achievement of collateral synergies and the ongoing generation of stable and substantial cash flows,” concluded Hill. The deal is expected to close in December 2016, subject to approval by Noble shareholders, regulatory approvals, and customary closing conditions. The organization will remain headquartered in San Diego and will continue to operate under the leadership of Jim Wood, president of Noble Americas. Operating cash flows from Noble Americas will continue to accrue to Noble until closing. The divestiture also releases approximately $275 million in letters of credit and surety bonds representing additional working capital which will become available to Noble. Calpine expects to fund the acquisition with a combination of cash on hand and temporary bridge loan financing of up to $550 million. Calpine expects to recover approximately $200 million through collateral synergies and the runoff of acquired legacy hedges, substantially within the first year, resulting in expected net cash deployed of approximately $700 million, including working capital, or approximately five times Noble Americas’ recent and expected run-rate adjusted EBITDA. In March 2016, Noble Group completed the sale of its remaining 49% stake in Noble Agri to COFCO International Ltd. for US$750 million in cash, with the additional retention of upside participation in the future growth of Noble Agri, worth up to US$200 million. Noble is using the entire proceeds of the disposal to pay down debt. Noble Group manages a portfolio of global supply chains covering a range of industrial and energy products. Operating from over 60 locations, Noble facilitates the marketing, processing, financing and transportation of essential raw materials. Sourcing bulk commodities from low cost regions such as South America, South Africa, Australia and Indonesia, the group supplies high growth demand markets, particularly in Asia and the Middle East. The company is ranked No. 77 in the 2015 Fortune Global 500. Noble Americas is a leading power marketer focused on offering supply and risk management services to commercial and industrial customers. Strategically, the company acts as a conduit for customers to manage their price and energy risk exposure. It buys energy wholesale and repackages that energy into retail products. It continually develops products and risk management tools that change the manner in which customers think about, and manage, their energy expenditure. The company has grown its gross margin and EBIT nine of the last ten years and its retention rates are among the highest in the industry. Noble Americas has been recognized for changing the face of US deregulated power by providing an industry leading web-enabled risk management solution, PowerFolio3D. This platform provides customers with the ability to analyze their potential risk to produce strategies, and to mitigate that risk and enhance the value in their portfolios. It currently operates out of six locations – its headquarters are in San Diego, with regional offices in Boston, Michigan, Chicago, New Jersey and Houston. The company has 210 employees and is currently the fifth largest commercial and industrial retail marketer in the US according to DNV-GL, formerly Kema. It has approximately 1,300 consumer clients and over 100,000 meters with demand requirements of approximately 8,000 MW per year. Noble Americas provides retail electricity in all 19 deregulated states in the US and natural gas in the Western US, primarily California and Nevada. During 2015, on average, the company invoiced 85,500 accounts per month with a 99.95% accuracy rate. It was also awarded an extension to ISO 9001:2008 certification, which is a robust process and procedure audit.]]>

Southeast Asian Ride-Hailing, Mobile Leader Grab Raises $750M Led by SoftBank

Southeast Asian Ride-Hailing, Mobile Leader Grab Raises $750M Led by SoftBank

Forbes, with an estimated net worth of US$14.9 billion. In July, SoftBank agreed to acquire UK-based ARM Holdings plc (LSE: ARM; NASDAQ: ARMH), whose microchips are used in more than 95% of all smartphones, for $32 billion in cash. Grab operates the largest transportation network in Southeast Asia and is one of the most frequently used mobile platforms in the region with up to 1.5 million daily bookings. the company offers private car, motorbike, taxi, and carpooling services across 6 countries and 31 cities in Southeast Asia, with 1 out of every 4 passengers using multiple services. “Our vision is to drive Southeast Asia transportation forward and transform the region’s mobile internet ecosystem. This latest funding, the largest in the history of Southeast Asia consumer technology, strengthens our ability to pursue those long-term goals as we continue to build on our market leadership,” said Grab CEO & co-founder Anthony Tan. Grab plans to continue expanding its transportation services in Southeast Asia, home to 620 million people, and a rising population of middle class and mobile users, especially in Indonesia. Grab also plans to significantly invest in mobile payments capabilities, to enable a seamless daily transaction experience in a region with low banking and credit card penetration and limited cashless payment options. Indonesia is Southeast Asia’s largest market with 250 million people, over a third of the region’s population. Grab will further expand the diversity, density and efficiency of its services in Jakarta, a congested city with 30 million people, where it believes its GrabCar, GrabBike, GrabTaxi and GrabFood services are relevant and transformative. In Indonesia, its GrabCar and GrabBike services grew 250x in one year as of the end of 1H2016, and continue to grow exponentially, the company said. Grab said it will also continue to invest in data science and machine learning capabilities to support its growth and enable services like predictive demand, and driver and user targeting. Grab continues to hire “top international talent in its R&D centers in Singapore, Beijing and Seattle,” developing “innovative features like Flash that pools cars and taxis,” improving “back-end routing capabilities,” and building a proprietary “POI mapping database.” The move comes less than two months after China’s ride-sharing leader Didi Chuxing agreed to acquire all assets of UberChina, including its brand, business operations and data within mainland China in a deal valued at $35 billion. A few days later in August, Go-Jek, Indonesia’s leading ride-hailing motorcycle taxi mobile app startup, raised over $550 million in growth equity funding led by global investment firms KKR & Co. (NYSE: KKR), Warburg Pincus, Farallon Capital and Capital Group Private Markets, as well as existing shareholders and other international investors. Previous investors in Go-Jek include Sequoia India, Northstar Group, DST Global, NSI Ventures, Rakuten Ventures and Formation Group. In June, Uber raised $3.5 billion from Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) in the largest funding it ever raised from a single investor, as part of a $5 billion funding round that valued the company at $68 billion, turning Uber into the world’s most highly valued startup. A month ago, in a strategic shift focusing on autonomous vehicles,, Uber acquired self-driving trucks startup Otto, in a deal reportedly valued at $700 million. Uber also said it made a partnership deal with Swedish carmaker Volvo, “a leader when it comes to safety.” In late August, Uber followed with the launch of an experimental driver-less car-hailing program in downtown Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, home to Carnegie Mellon University’s robotics department, crossing an important milestone that no automotive or technology company had yet achieved, Photo: Masayoshi Son, Chairman and CEO of SoftBank.]]>