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EasyVan raises US$10m to fund China, Southeast Asia expansion

PUBLISHED : Monday, 30 May, 2016, 9:14pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 31 May, 2016, 9:07pm

Hong Kong on-demand van rental start-up Lalamove, known as EasyVan, has raised US$10 million in funding to aid its expansion in China and Southeast Asia.

The latest round led by its existing investor Mindworks Ventures brings the total amount of funding raised by the company in the past 18 months to US$30 million as the company’s founder says Lalamove aims to expand to 49 cities and become profitable this year.

Existing investors, including Chinese venture capital fund Crystal Stream, Taiwan’s AppWorks and Hong Kong family office Aria Group, were joined by Thai securities investment service firm Asia Plus Group.

“There is so much potential in making delivery more efficient as mobile internet is changing the way mobile assets are utilised,” said Lalamove founder and chief executive officer Shing Chow. “This funding will be used to accelerate our leadership position and expansion efforts throughout China and other SEA countries.”

Founded in 2013, Lalamove now claims to have the largest footprint in Asia with operations in Hong Kong, Bangkok, Singapore, Taipei and 15 mainland Chinese cities.

The company recently made its 2.5 millionth delivery and has more than 50,000 drivers using its app.

This is the third consecutive funding round for the company to raise US$10 million, following funding announcements in September and January last year.

Chow has said the company was founded with capital from his time as a professional poker player.

Lalamove said its presence in 19 Asian cities will allow it to capitalise on the increasing trend for companies to outsource delivery services.

Earlier this month, Lalamove announced it had partnered with messaging app Line to deliver orders made through the Line Man goods delivery app using its fleet of motorcycles in Bangkok.

Line Man allows users to order goods such as food, or request couriers to deliver documents using the logistics company.

The company also works with Ikea and Google, according to Chow.

Lalamove was rated among the top 20 Hong Kong start-ups at the end of 2015 by start-up ratings company Oddup.

Fellow Hong Kong van booking service GoGoVan recently received an undisclosed amount of funding from Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba’s Hong Kong Entrepreneurs Fund.

The start-up, which began as a lunchbox advertising firm before realising the method to book deliver vans was slow and cumbersome, raised another undisclosed round of funding led by New Horizon Capital this month.

In June last year, the company raised US$10 million from the former chief executive of Android app store 91 Wireless.

GoGoVan operates in Hong Kong, Singapore, China, South Korea and Taiwan. The company has signed up 70,000 drivers and more than 20,000 commercial drivers since it was founded in 2013.

United States-based Uber launched Uber Cargo in Hong Kong in January 2015.

Alibaba Group owns the South China Morning Post.