Business & Economy Startups Today’s top tech news, January 7: Tesla breaks ground in China and...

Today’s top tech news, January 7: Tesla breaks ground in China and GuavaPass is sold

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Also, True Digital Park inks four partnership deals and Tokyo Century increases Grab stake

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Tesla breaks ground on first China factory — [Financial Times]

Elon Musk today announced plans to build Tesla’s first China factory by the end of the summer with the goal producing its first Model 3 vehicles by the end of 2019.

According to the Financial Times, the plant will be called Gigafactory 3 and is expected to have the capacity to produce 500,000 cars a year.

The goal of the plant is to produce only Model 3 vehicles meant for the China . Model 3s built for the global consumer will be built in the US and more high-scale vehicles (which will also be sold in China) will also be built in .

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The Tesla stock price has risen 5.77 per cent today.

Bangkok’s True Digital Park inks partnership with four giants — [Press Release]

True Digital Park, the large-scale startup-focussed infrastructure project in Bangkok, announced today it has partnered with tech giants Cisco, Microsoft, Epson and Ricoh to build a “state-of-the-art work environment”.

Examples of some of the technology being implemented are heat maps, facial recognition technology, smart office appliances, AI products and an ‘innovation experience center’.

The breakdown (copied directly from the press release) is as follows:

  • Cisco: Cisco will incorporate Heat Map that collects data on space utilization within True Digital
    Park for further analysis, management and effective communication with the users; and Smart
    Lighting that operates power control at the office and meeting rooms to ensure Smart Office
    and Smart Building.
  • Microsoft: To enhance the security standards at True Digital Park, Microsoft would introduce
    an AI-driven face detection and facial recognition system to automatically monitor incoming
    and outgoing foot traffic instead of relying traditional card-based alternatives. This new system
    is powered by Cognitive Services on the Microsoft Azure cloud platform.
  • Epson: Epson’s innovative “Laser Projector” delivers better resolution and longer service life
    than those of conventional projectors. Epson will also provide interactive projectors at board
    rooms and high-contrast projectors at large conference rooms. All projectors support wireless
    connection to ensure efficient and engaging meetings.
  • Ricoh: Ricoh’s multifunctional printers will be installed to support activities handled by start-
    ups and users at the convention centers inside True Digital Park. Ricoh Experience Center
    will also be established as a platform to ignite creativity under the concept of open innovation.

ClassPass buys top Asia competitor GuavaPass — [e27]

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ClassPass, a product that allows people to book gym classes at various locations, has bought its top Asian competitor GuavaPass.

Both companies did not disclose the financial terms of the deal. It is expected to be finalised by the end of January.

ClassPass will bring onboard about half of the GuavaPass staff and use the acquisition to facilitate rapid expansion across Asia and the Middle East.

The specific locations are Abu Dhabi, Bangkok, Beijing, Dubai, Hong Kong, , Kuala Lumpur, Manila, , Shanghai and Singapore. GuavaPass will cease operations in these cities. The brand will be used in other markets but will still be under the ClassPass umbrella.

Tokyo Century boosts investment in Grab — [Press Release]

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Tokyo Century, a Japanese financial services company, has boosted its investment in Southeast Asian ride-hailing company Grab, raising its total investment to US$175 million.

According to a press release, part of the investment is going towards Grab Rentals, which rents private-hire vehicles for people to use in Singapore.

The goal of this is to help facilitate more flexible driver arrangements as well as finance the upcoming launch of a fleet of electric vehicles.

Overdrive raises US$2.9 million — [e27]

Singapore-based IoT startup Overdrive has completed its US$2.9 million Series A round, which was solely funded by Southeast Asia B2B-focussed VC Tin Men Capital.

Founded in 2015 by CEO Aston Chia and COO Zen Chin, who were university schoolmates in Australia, the company has developed an IoT platform that enables businesses to build an interconnected data sensing environment, extracting data from sources such as goods or vehicles and machinery.

The platform is then configured to optimally deliver business objectives such as real-time tracking and monitoring, exception alerting and command centre visualisation.

The post Today’s top tech news, January 7: Tesla breaks ground in China and GuavaPass is sold appeared first on e27.

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