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Hong Kong Startup News Round Up - December 22

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The Mills Fabrica Launches an Evergreen VC Fund, “Fabrica Fund”

The Mills Fabrica of Nan Fung Group is excited to announce the launch of “Fabrica Fund”, an evergreen VC Fund dedicated towards investing in global techstyle startups.

The fund is structured as an evergreen VC fund with strong financial backing from the Nan Fung Group and will target early stage investments from seed to Series B. It creates an additional platform to support techstyle startups and future returns of the fund will also be further reinvested to build the wider Fabrica community.

The fund is global in its mandate but has a preference for startups with a Hong Kong connection. Portfolio companies of the fund will benefit from the extensive networks of The Mills’ partners (including many of the largest industry manufacturers and brands) as well as Fabrica’s incubator experience in accelerating startup growth.

EOS Raises $700M Despite Token Affording "No Purpose"

Block.one’s EOS ICO has raised approximately $700 million USD, despite EOS’ FAQ page clearly stating that token-holders will not be afforded any rights or functions. The token sale currently comprises the largest ICO to date, with the company anticipating a launch in June 2018.

At the end of October, the chairman of the Bitcoin Foundation, Brock Pierce,  stated that EOS’s 345 day ICO had “almost” raised $700 million USD during a discussion at Launch Scale 2017, adding that the company is currently selling 2 million tokens daily.

According to The Wall Street Journal, many investors are choosing to disregard the lack of legal rights afforded by the EOS tokens, viewing such as likely to be no more than a benign necessity in order for the company to protect itself in the current climate of regulatory ambiguity surrounding the legal status of cryptocurrency startups. 

Hong Kong-Based FinTech Startup EMQ Raises $6.5m Series A

Hong Kong-based fintech startup EMQ recently raised $6.5 million in a Series A round from well-known Silicon Valley entrepreneurs and international venture capital (VC) firms.

Headquartered in Hong Kong, EMQ is building a financial network across Asia with a focus on remittances. With a footprint across Hong Kong, Taiwan, Indonesia, Vietnam and the Philippines, the company partners with financial institutions and other strategic partners in each country to enable and settle cross-border remittance via banks and various modes for top-up and last mile delivery. 

“The Series A round supports the growth and expansion of EMQ in regulatory approvals, R&D in the compliance technologies and the launch of our commercial initiatives as we continue to build out our remittance network across Asia,” said Max Liu, its founder and CEO.

OKEx Raised Tens of Millions of Dollars from Giant Network Group and Qianhe Capital Management

OKEx, a world-leading digital asset trading platform, has raised tens of millions of dollars in the new funding round in early 2017.

The investment is being led by Giant Network Group, Qianhe Capital Management, eLong Inc.), Longling Capital and existing investor Ceyuan Ventures.

Based in Belize, and with its main operation hub located in Hong Kong, OKEx is an international company specializing in blockchain technology & digital asset development and applications.

Softbank Takes Stake in US InsurTech Startup Lemonade

Softbank has become the latest big name investor to take a stake in New York-based insurance start-up Lemonade, with a funding amount of $120m.

Lemonade, which sells insurance to people who rent property in the US, is one of the most high profile of the wave of so-called insurtech start-ups aiming to disrupt the centuries-old insurance industry.

The company says it will use the new money raised for global expansion in 2018.

"By combining big data and AI with a seamless user experience, Lemonade is truly revolutionizing the insurance industry," said David Thevenon, a senior investment professional at SoftBank. 

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