Bloomberg reports that Huochebang and Yunmanman, two of the largest apps providing Uber-like services for China’s cargo trucking market, have agreed to merge. Neither company would agree to comment, but “people familiar with the matter” said that:
- “Wang Gang, a backer of Yunmanman’s and an angel investor in ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing, would become the chief executive officer of the new entity” worth over $2 billion; and
- The companies are “already in the process of seeking new funding to sustain their rapid pace of expansion.”
It’s another sign of a maturing market in on-demand services broadly, as TechNode reports that “6 of China’s bike rental companies have shuttered in the last 5 months” and other niche ride-sharing and vehicle rental companies have confronted new challenges.
China busts a $3 billion underground bank as it tightens its grip on money / NYT (paywall)
“More than 10,000 people had used an underground bank to effectively funnel $3 billion out of the country before the authorities put a stop to it.”
Financial regulators seek to tame China’s $15 trillion Wild West / Caixin
Sweeping new rules aim to “rein in financial risk and curtail the rampant growth of the shadow banking sector.”
Online advertising and Tencent
Why Tencent could become an advertising powerhouse like Facebook / Bloomberg
Tencent is aggressively pushing into online advertising, where it has never been a player despite its success in messaging and gaming.
China limits waste. ‘Cardboard grannies’ and Texas recyclers scramble. / NYT (paywall)
“China doesn’t want to be the rest of the world’s trash can. Over the summer, regulators in Beijing started an unusually intense crackdown on what they called ‘foreign garbage,’ citing health and environmental concerns.”