Juro Osawa, The Information

Juro Osawa

The Information

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Recent:
  • Unknown
Past:
  • The Information
  • Wall Street Journal
  • Cashay

Past articles by Juro:

In China, Apps Are Out—Infrastructure Is In

Recently, in Shanghai’s gritty industrial district, venture capitalist Ian Goh put on a gas mask to observe robots pack exactly 40 kilograms of wheat flour into each bag. It was all part of his due diligence on a Chinese startup, Innotime, that makes packaging robots. In a hunt for new ... → Read More

Jack Ma’s Ant Group Delays IPO as Beijing’s Tech Crackdown Goes On

When Chinese regulators canceled Ant Group’s $37 billion initial public offering in late 2020, the question was how long the financial services behemoth, which was then valued on paper at more than $300 billion, would stay in regulatory purgatory. The answer remains elusive: Bankers who last ... → Read More

TikTok Owner ByteDance Finds Game Success Through Influencers

ByteDance, the Chinese company that owns TikTok, has proved it can generate tens of billions of dollars in revenue from online ads on its blockbuster video apps. Now it may finally have figured out how to get a bigger piece of the huge games market, after having made repeated missteps in the ... → Read More

SoftBank Ramps Up Software Bets With $1.3 Billion Tungee Talks

SoftBank is ramping up its software bets—as aggressively as ever. The investment firm is in talks to invest in Chinese software as a service firm Tungee at a $1.3 billion valuation, even as a group of other venture capitalists are investing in the firm at a $1 billion valuation, two people with ... → Read More

Tesla’s China Orders Halved in May, Internal Data Show, As Crisis Deepens

Tesla vehicle orders in China fell by nearly half in May compared to April, according to internal data, as the electric car pioneer grappled with public outcry and government criticism over its handling of consumer complaints. Taken together, the developments put in doubt Tesla’s vaunted ... → Read More

ByteDance Investors Say CEO Change Is Reaction to Beijing’s Tech Crackdown

Two investors in TikTok owner ByteDance said they supported Thursday’s surprise announcement by founder Zhang Yiming that he is stepping down as CEO of the world’s most valuable privately-held technology company. The move by Zhang to play a less prominent role and hand the reins to a trusted ... → Read More

Alibaba Frets Over Apple Privacy Policy

Last week, Alibaba invited half a dozen marketing industry executives to discuss a growing worry: Apple’s new privacy policy on its mobile software threatens to cut off the Chinese e-commerce giant and its advertising partners from troves of user data that fuel the company’s all-important ad ... → Read More

Didi Chuxing Aborted $1 Billion Acquisition of Aurora Amid Concerns of U.S. Officials

After defeating Uber in China’s brutal ride-hailing war in 2016, Didi Chuxing had an even more ambitious goal: Win the global race to develop robotaxis. A year later, Didi quietly struck a $1 billion deal to acquire Aurora Innovation, the high-profile self-driving-car firm led by Chris Urmson, a ... → Read More

Upstart Courier Service Raised More than $2 Billion To Fight Alibaba-Backed Rivals

J&T Express, an upstart Southeast Asian logistics and courier service that has expanded aggressively in China, has raised more than $2 billion to fund its fight against rival parcel delivery companies backed by Alibaba, people familiar with the matter said. It’s another example of how control of ... → Read More

China’s $6 Billion Social E-Commerce App Hires CFO as It Eyes U.S. IPO

The list of Chinese tech firms heading to the public markets is getting longer. The latest to lay the groundwork for an initial public offering is Xiaohongshu, an Instagram-like social e-commerce platform. The company recently hired a chief financial officer and is considering going public in ... → Read More

How Singapore’s Sea Used Facebook to Become an E-Commerce Giant

Five years ago, Facebook was a catalyst for e-commerce across Southeast Asia, where cheap smartphones were changing consumer behavior in a region with twice the population of the U.S. On the Facebook and Instagram apps, local merchants and shoppers were able to find each other and arrange sales, ... → Read More

Tencent’s Investments Got $120 Billion Boost From 2020 Rally

It’s the kind of track record that would make any Sand Hill Road venture capitalist jealous. Tencent, best known for its WeChat messaging app, is one of the world’s biggest and savviest tech investors, holding stakes in a range of companies including Snap and Meituan. Previously unreported ... → Read More

SPACs Spread to China as ByteDance Investor Hony Capital Preps Listing

The SPAC boom is spreading to China. Hony Capital, a major private equity firm which has investments in companies such as TikTok owner ByteDance and WeWork’s China unit, is preparing to list a special purpose acquisition company in the U.S. That will make it one of the first Chinese private ... → Read More

Inside WeChat’s Struggle to Slow Down TikTok Owner ByteDance

A cartoon pig raps about the misery of job hunting during the pandemic. Another clip says a shortage of office toilet paper is a sign of a failing company. Both bite-size videos were posted online by Xiao Yang as part of his job marketing a company that sells online career services in China. His ... → Read More

ByteDance’s Revenue More Than Doubled in 2020

You might have thought TikTok’s owner ByteDance had a tough year in 2020, what with President Trump trying to ban TikTok and India actually taking that step. But none of that mattered to ByteDance’s actual business, which grew like gangbusters. ByteDance’s revenue last year more than doubled to ... → Read More

Amid IPO Boom, China’s Top Tech Dealmaker Raising $2.5 Billion for Investment Funds

China Renaissance, the boutique bank launched by influential tech dealmaker Fan Bao, is in talks to raise about $2.5 billion for two new investment funds that largely will target private tech companies, two people with knowledge of the matter said. The size of the funds shows how successful ... → Read More

Jack Ma’s Investment Firm Raises $3 Billion as Foreign Capital Chases China

As China’s economy recovers from Covid-19, the country’s top-tier private equity and VC firms are raising billions of dollars for their new tech-focused funds from investors around the world. Yunfeng Capital, a Chinese private equity firm co-founded by Alibaba founder Jack Ma that also is a ... → Read More

Alibaba in Talks to Invest in Online Fashion Retailer Farfetch

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba is in advanced discussions to invest nearly $300 million in London-based online luxury fashion retailer Farfetch, people familiar with the matter said, as China emerges as the most important battleground for luxury brands. Alibaba, whose shopping apps have 874 ... → Read More

How Tesla is Winning From the U.S.-China Trade War

On Nov. 1 last year, Tesla invited executives from dozens of China-based automotive parts suppliers to the carmaker’s new Shanghai factory, where its first made-in-China Model 3 sedans were about to roll out. At the event, Roshan Thomas, Tesla’s senior executive in charge of managing suppliers, ... → Read More

Once a Hero, TikTok’s Founder Is Under Attack in China —

Zhang Yiming was a hometown hero. Local media heralded his startup, ByteDance, as China’s most internationally successful internet product. It was the first Chinese tech company to challenge the likes of Facebook for global pop-culture dominance with its breakout hit app, TikTok. Now, as his ... → Read More