Headlines 

George Soros Prepares to Trade Cryptocurrencies

The family office is said to have recently approved trading Soros called the digital assets a ‘bubble’ in January George Soros called cryptocurrencies a bubble in January. Now his $26 billion family office is planning to trade digital assets. Adam Fisher, who oversees macro investing at New York-based Soros Fund Management, got internal approval to trade virtual coins in the last few months, though he has yet to make a wager, according to people familiar with the matter. A spokesman declined to comment. Soros, Read more: Crypto Hedge-Fund Bubble Begins…

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Headlines 

Alibaba Singles’ Day Posts Record 168 Billion Yuan in Sales

Jack Ma is using it as a testing ground for his plans to revamp China’s $4 trillion traditional retail sector with technology, an experiment that could help the behemoth gain an edge in China’s saturated market. “The work that’s been done in the integration of offline and online, not just in terms of the technology integration, but the data and efficiencies for brands and the consumer through personalization has been enormous,” Alibaba President Mike Evans said in an interview on Bloomberg TV. “We see the impact of it in our…

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Headlines 

Alibaba Singles’ Day Sales Hit $8.6 Billion in First Hour

Jack Ma is using this year’s event as a testing ground for his plans to revamp China’s $4 trillion traditional retail sector with technology, an experiment that could help the behemoth gain an edge in China’s saturated retail market. “The work that’s been done in the integration of offline and online, not just in terms of the technology integration, but the data and efficiencies for brands and the consumer through personalization has been enormous,” Alibaba President Mike Evans said in an interview on Bloomberg TV. “We see the impact of…

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Odds and Ends 

Apple removes VPN apps from the App Store in China

The Chinese governments crackdown on the internet continues with the news that Apple has removed all major VPN apps, which help internet users overcome the countrys censorship system, from the App Store in China. The move was first noted by ExpressVPN, a provider based outside of China,which said in a blog post all major VPN apps including its own had been purged from Apples China-based store. The company shared a note from Apple (below) explaining that its app was removed because it includes content that is illegal in China. The…

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Odds and Ends 

Cross-border payment startup InstaRem eyes IPO in 2020 after closing $13M Series B

Cross-border payment startupInstaRem has raised $13 million in new financing as it looks to expand its business, which is rooted in Asia, into Europe and North America ahead of an eventual public listing as soon as 2020. The Singapore-based startup said the raise was led by ChinasGSR Ventures, an early investor in Didi among others, withparticipation from Japan/Netherlands SBI-FMO Emerging Asia Financial Sector Fund. Existing backersVertexVentures, Fullerton Financial Holdings, and Global Founders Capital also joined the round. Instarem previously closed a $5 million Series A in March 2016. InstaRem operates…

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Odds and Ends 

Deal-finding browser tool Honey now tracks Amazon price drops, offers hotel savings

Since its launch several years ago, the deal-finding browser add-on Honey has grown its install base to 4.4 million users on Chrome, in addition to its smaller presence on Firefox and Safari. Initially conceived as an easier way to find savings by tracking sales and retailers promo codes, the company is now expanding its selection of online shopping tools to include an Amazon price drop tracker called DropList, along with other new tools for finding travel deals. With its heavy focus on finding coupon codes, Honey has been missing out…

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Odds and Ends 

Targets next-day essentials delivery service opens to customers in pilot test

Target announced this morning its opening to consumers a new, next-day home-delivery service called Target Restock. The company said in May the service was live and being tested with company employees ahead of a consumer-facing pilot program that was due to arrive sometime this summer. The service is initially available to Minneapolis-area customers, which is near Target headquarters. Target Restock is meant to rivalAmazons Prime Pantry, as it also offers the ability for online shoppers to fill a box of everyday essentials online many of which would be otherwise prohibitive…

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Odds and Ends 

Amazon launches Prime Reload, offering 2% back on purchases funded through debit cards

Amazon today is launching a new perk for Prime members that will give them cash back on purchases even if theyre not paying for items using an Amazon cashback credit card. Through a new rewards program called Amazon Prime Reload, Prime members can receive 2 percent back on purchases when they first load funds into their Amazon Balance using a debit card attached to their banks checking account. Amazon Prime Reload is meant to encourage more people to sign up for Prime, the $99 per yearmembership program that includes free,…

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Odds and Ends 

Sense360 raises $7 million to track customers in fast food restaurants

Physical tracking in shops has been a global trend have beentracking customers movements through stores in an effort to regain some of the ground lost to the online retail experience. At least, thats the argument from stores. And now fast food restaurants are picking up the rallying cry. On the back of nearly 20,000 fast food locations usingits customer-tracking technologies in stores, the Los Angeles-based startupBirdEyeraised $25 million in Februaryto not onlyanalyze customer behavior and feedback but also to provide a sort of relationship managementthat the company said can help…

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