Asia-Pacific Gateway 54Tbps subsea cable completes construction

NEC has announced the completion of the Asia-Pacific Gateway (APG) subsea cable between China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, and Singapore, which provides capacity of more than 54 terabits per second.

The APG fibre-optic submarine cable — owned by a consortium of telecommunications carriers including China’s China Telecom, China Unicom, and China Mobile; Japan’s NTT Communications; South Korea’s KT Corporation and LG Uplus; Singapore’s StarHub; Taiwan’s Chunghwa Telecom; Thailand’s CAT; Malaysia’s Global Transit Communications; and Vietnam’s Viettel and VNPT — stretches 10,900km across the region.

“NEC is honoured to have been selected as the supplier for APG,” Shunichiro Tejima, executive vice president and head of the Telecom Carrier Business Unit at NEC, said.

“We hope to see our partnership with the consortium further enhanced through NEC’s ability to provide real-time technical support for the operation and maintenance of this advanced submarine cable.”

Back in 2012, Facebook also invested an undisclosed amount into the APG in order to “help support our growth in South Asia, making it possible for us to provide a better user experience for a greater number of Facebook users in countries like India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Hong Kong, and Singapore”.

Telecommunications carriers and consortiums are racing to build out subsea cable capacity across the Asia-Pacific region, driven by the rapid increase in data usage globally.

Australia’s incumbent telco Telstra acquired a 36,000km cable network system connecting China, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and the Philippines as part of purchasing Pacnet for $697 million in December 2014, and is also involved in a number of submarine cable projects: In May, it announced the Bay of Bengal Gateway (BBG) 8,000km 100Gbps submarine cable system, made up of three fibre pairs, which will connect Singapore, Malaysia, India, Sri Lanka, Oman, and the United Arab Emirates.

Telstra, Singaporean telco Singtel, and Australian company SubPartners in March also entered a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to construct a high-capacity Perth-to-Singapore subsea cable. The cable, named APX-West, will be 4,500km long, with two fibre pairs providing a minimum of 10Tbps capacity each pair and two-way data transmission, expected to be complete by 2018.

In September, Nextgen and Alcatel-Lucent Submarine Networks activated the $139 million North West Cable System (NWCS), now owned by Vocus Communications, a 2,100km fibre-optic submarine cable between Darwin and Port Headland.

The Australia-Singapore Cable (ASC) project, also acquired by Vocus after originally being a AU$170 million 50-50 joint-venture deal between Vocus and Nextgen, involves constructing a 100Gbps 4,600km subsea cable connecting Perth to Singapore and Indonesia.

The AU$400 million Trident subsea cable, backed by Beijing Construction and Engineering Group with the support of the China Development Bank, will connect the west coast of Australia with Singapore via Indonesia, and is expected to be completed by the second quarter of 2018. It has a bandwidth of 28Tbps utilising 100Gbps coherent dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) technology, which is upgradeable to 400Gbps.

In April, the 14,000km 30Tbps capacity Hawaiki Submarine Cable connecting Australia and New Zealand to Hawaii and the West Coast of the United States also commenced construction, with an expected completion date of mid-2018.

The “FASTER” 10,000km subsea cable system connecting Japan with the west coast of the United States, consisting of six fibre pairs and making use of 10Gbps wave technology, is also being built, as is the Southern Cross Cable Network between California and Sydney.

Source: ZDNet

JuiceAPac in collaboration for KKIFF 2017

JuiceAPac is proud to be collaborating for The Kota Kinabalu International Film Festival (KKIFF) 2017 – Borneo’s first and longest running film festival.

The KKIFF aims to give Sabahans the opportunity to see international and independent films they would not normally see and to showcase local filmmakers.

Alibaba-backed Lazada in talks to buy Southeast Asia grocery delivery startup Redmart

Alibaba acquired a controlling stake in Lazada, the Rocket Internet-backed e-commerce company in Southeast Asia, for $1 billion earlier this year, and now it is taking steps to turn the business into the ’emerging market Amazon’ that it was originally intended to be.

Lazada, under Alibaba’s stewardship, is in advanced talks with Redmart, a Singapore-based grocery delivery service, to buy the company, three sources with knowledge of discussions told TechCrunch. Redmart is said to prefer an investment, but one source told us that an acquisition priced between $30-40 million could be agreed and announced as soon as next week.

Redmart, Lazada and Alibaba did not respond to requests for comment.

Lazada sells a range of products, including electronics, fashion and baby items. Adding Redmart to its business would give it groceries and fresh product capabilities, too. Lazada operates in six countries in Southeast Asia, Redmart is present in Singapore only, but has long harbored regional aspirations.

The writing has been on the wall for Redmart, which has raised over $55 million in capital from investors including Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin, who is now a prominent VC in Southeast Asia, and games giant Garena. Redmart was the first to pioneer the e-grocery model in Southeast Asia when it was founded five years ago, but it has battled financing issues. Earlier this year, we reported that it was trying to raise $100 million to expand beyond Singapore and shore up its finances, but that deal failed to materialize. An exit is clearly on the cards now: Bloomberg reported in September that Redmart is working with an investment bank to sound out potential buyers — we hear it has been busy.

One source with knowledge of discussions told TechCrunch that Redmart has held unsuccessful talks with Singapore-based supermarket retailer NTUC and the country’s sovereign wealth fund GIC. It isn’t clear just how advanced those discussions where, however. Another source told us Redmart rejected a ‘low ball’ offer from Amazon earlier this year. Redmart contacted Amazon again recently, the source said, in the hope that Lazada’s interest would spark another bid, but that did not materialize. (Amazon’s plan for Southeast Asia is unclear at this point.)

In Alibaba and Lazada, Redmart seems to found a better match than its other suitors. Alibaba made its investment in Lazada just as the company was reaching the end of its financial runway, and, though we don’t know the exact state of its balance sheet, Redmart continues to post losses, as Tech In Asia recently reported.

President Jack Ma and others in Alibaba’s senior management team have called India, where it owns a stake in e-commerce firm Paytm, and Southeast Asia its highest-priority growth markets. Alibaba showed with Lazada and its impending investment in financial services firm Ascend Money that it is ready to do deals in Southeast Asia to gain an early foothold in the region, where Amazon — already its key rival in India — does not yet have a presence. Though online is thought to account for less than five percent of all commerce in Southeast Asia, the region houses more than 600 million consumers. An increasingly affluent middle-class and rising access to the internet are among the factors tipped to swell the region’s digital economy to $200 billion per year by 2025, according to a recent report co-authored by Google. E-commerce is seen as one of the major benefactors.

Despite that potential, the currently reality is tough. While the final exit price may disappoint investors, Redmart would do well to align itself with a parent with deep pockets to outmaneuver its competition and remain afloat as a business.

HappyFresh, an 18-month-old rival that has raised more than $20 million from investors, recently withdrew its services from two markets in Southeast Asia in order to “focus on sustainability and profitability.”

HonestBee, a younger competitor, raised $15 million last year to execute on an ambitious plan to get into over half a dozen countries in Southeast Asia and the surrounding region. One year on, however, and the service is present in just four cities, illustrating the challenge of scaling a capital-intensive business on a limited budget.

Source: TechCrunch

Asia Pacific Top Excellence Brand Recognition

JuiceAPac - Asia Pacific Top Excellence Brand

JuiceAPac is proud to be awarded with Asia Pacific Top Excellence Brand 2016 ~ 2018 – Book of The TOP Recognition inconjunction with The 15th Asia Pacific International Entrepreneur Excellence Award 2016. This prestigious event was held on 23th October 2016 at Marriot Putrajaya Hotel.

Facebook launches Marketplace for local buying and selling

A man is silhouetted against a video screen with an Facebook logo as he poses with an Samsung S4 smartphone in this photo illustration taken in the central Bosnian town of Zenica, August 14, 2013. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/File Photo

A man is silhouetted against a video screen with an Facebook logo as he poses with an Samsung S4 smartphone in this photo illustration taken in the central Bosnian town of Zenica, August 14, 2013. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/File Photo

Facebook Inc launched Marketplace to allow people to buy and sell items locally as the social media network tries new ways to keep users engaged.

The feature will appear as a “shop” icon at the bottom of the Facebook app and will allow users to list or search for items on sale in their neighborhood.

The company will not facilitate the payment or delivery of items and will not take a cut from any transactions, Facebook said.

The new service will be rolled out in the United States, the UK, Australia and New Zealand for iPhone and Android users over the next few days, the company said in a blog post, adding that the feature will be available on the desktop version in the coming months.

More than 450 million people already visit Facebook groups that have items to buy and sell each month, the company said.

Last year, Facebook said it was testing several ad features that allow users to shop directly through its app, an effort to move further into e-commerce.

Facebook’s shares were little changed at $128.39 in morning trading on Monday on the Nasdaq.

Source: Reuters

Waze just got a ‘lot’ better

What a waste: Drivers waste up to 55 hours a year looking for somewhere to park their car. — AFP Relaxnews

What a waste: Drivers waste up to 55 hours a year looking for somewhere to park their car. — AFP Relaxnews

Popular navigation app Waze is teaming up with INRIX to take the stress out of finding a parking lot a lot closer to your final destination.

It doesn’t matter how good the active safety and assistance features are on current cars if you can’t take advantage of them. A host of 2016 model-year vehicles can park themselves in a parallel or perpendicular space while simultaneously keeping an electronic eye out for on-coming traffic.

However, if you can’t find a parking space in the first place, the systems are redundant. And according to the latest Frost and Sullivan data, the average driver is currently wasting 55 hours a year looking for a parking space and that equates to a staggering US$600mil (RM2.48bil) in lost time and burned fuel in the US and Europe.

Waze already offers a list of parking lots sourced from its user community but by partnering with INRIX the app will now have a comprehensive list of facilities throughout Europe and North America.

“Driving from point A to B is only part of the journey,” said Alex Israel, vice president and general manager of parking at INRIX. “The addition of INRIX Parking enhances Wazers’ end-to-end driving experience.”

INRIX is one of the world leaders in connecting cars and is leveraging that information for insights on everything from congestion to parking. Its technology is appearing as standard in a host of carmakers’ ranges, from BMW to Volvo.

This initial coming together will only provide Waze users with navigation to car parks closest to their destination, but INRIX also has dynamic solutions that offer real-time information about pricing and use – i.e., how many spaces are available at a facility – plus algorithms that can calculate which on-street parking areas are the most and least likely to be in use.

“Driving around looking for spots impacts arrival times and adds unneeded frustration and stress to the entire driving experience,” said Flavia Sasaki Siqueira, Head of Business Development for Waze.

“Combining INRIX parking information with our own parking database expands reach and accuracy of the ‘where to park’ feature.” — AFP Relaxnews

Source: The Star Online