Freshly Minted

Freshly Minted: This Unsung VC Fund Anoints Tech’s Biggest Players in China in the U.S.

China's internet lifestyle is mostly lived on mobile, and that market is projected to be three times what the US could ever match, Mr. Richards told Betabeat. (Photo via Getty)

Welcome to Freshly Minted, where we examine an overlooked deal or funding announcement in tech from the past week, and tell you what you need to know, and why it matters.

This week’s deal: GGV Capital, a V.C. firm that focuses on tech companies in the U.S. and China, has raised their fifth fund at $620 million.

The Chinese tech world is like a parallel universe — the Chinese have their own social networks, ecommerce platforms, gaming empires and mobile chat clients. But GGV Capital has had a hand in both worlds for over 10 years, and now that the two markets are colliding, they stand poised as a major power broker between the Chinese and American tech worlds. Read More

Fresh Capital

Fab Just Raised $150M, But Their Series D Still Isn’t Done

International love.

Pivot-happy ecommerce startup Fab has raised yet another round of cash. CEO Jason Goldberg announced in a blog post that the company has just closed $150 million in new funding. Participants include Tencent, Atomico, Andreessen Horowitz, Itochu Technology Ventures, and existing investors.

What’s more, he adds, it’s “just the first part of a larger Series D round” they expect to complete over the coming weeks.

This brings two-year-old Fab’s total VC funds to $310 million. No word whether it’s all stuffed into Brillo Pad poufs and weird plant holders lying around the office. Read More


Booting Up: This Teen Just Made Millions Off Yahoo

$30 million buys a lot of shirts with whimsical patterns. (Photo: Wikipedia)

As if recently released prisoners didn’t have enough trouble readjusting to life on the outside, now they have to learn all sorts of new digital skills, too. [WNYC]

Spotify is reportedly launching its own video streaming service, with plans for original content. [Business Insider]

Yahoo just bought the news app Summly for a reported $30 million, making its 17-year-old creator a very, very wealthy young man. Try not to spend it all in one place, kid! [AllThingsD]

China’s getting its very own Snapchat clone. [Tech in Asia]

Speaking of China: Tencent’s QQ (the largest IM service in China, with 780 million MAU) has just released a version designed for Facebook. It comes with built-in chat translation features. [QQ]


Early Adopters

Supermodel Coco Rocha’s Social Media Game Is On Some Other Level

Screen Shot 2013-02-14 at 2.48.08 PM

As a supermodel–and here Betabeat can only conjecture–the product you’re selling, essentially, is you. Your matchstick stems, all the places you go, your cool attitude = you. Therefore, as with most celebrities (and increasingly regular humans) run-of-the-mill personal brand building on social media is directly tied to revenue.

But even if Coco Rocha‘s entire extended Canadian family depended on the number of her Instagram followers, you still have to respect the 24-year-old’s commitment. We discovered as much this afternoon at panel run by Decoded Fashion hosted on the mouth of a runway at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week. Read More

Groupon Fatigue

Groupon’s Chinese Joint Venture Is Falling Apart as American Groupon Renews Its March Toward IPO

(Max Whittaker,

“It’s an open secret that Groupon’s China JV, Gaopeng (高朋), is on its way to becoming the next failure of foreign internet companies entering China,” the Chinese tech blog TechRice wrote earlier this month. In the U.S., Groupon, which is being sued by its employees for ludicrously-uncomfortable working conditions, and has been the subject of a string of bad press for everything from its shaky financials to the peppy memo that was accidentally-on-purpose leaked to AllThingsD, prompting an SEC investigation that was resolved without penalty. But after canceling its IPO roadshow, Dealbook is reporting that the startup is back on track for a public offering even as the markets continues to suck. Read More