Alibaba in $16b logistics bet as Bill Gates goes a-milkin’

Alibaba in $16b logistics bet as Bill Gates goes a-milkin’

01 Jun 2018

SenseTime and Pine Labs scored big in their latest funding rounds, Alibaba promised to drive down logistics costs, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation backed a dairy industry tech startup.

Delivery and logistics

Alibaba commits US$15.6 billion to worldwide delivery (China). Alibaba founder and chairman Jack Ma said that Cainiao Network, the company’s logistics subsidiary, will invest the sum to “build the technical backbone for a smart logistics network aimed at improving delivery reach and efficiency.” Cainiao is aiming to extend 24-hour delivery to all of China, as well as 72-hour delivery from the country to the rest of the world. It is also hoping to push overall logistics costs down from 15 percent of China’s GDP to under 5 percent over the next few years. (Alibaba)

Artificial intelligence

SenseTime banks US$620 million just two months after previous funding (China). The unicorn, which develops facial recognition tech, secured the fresh investment in a Fidelity International-led “series C-plus” round. Hopu Capital, Silver Lake, and Tiger Global also participated in the raise, which is said to give SenseTime a post-money valuation of US$4.5 billion. The startup netted US$600 million in an Alibaba-led funding round in April.


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