Left to right: Atsushi Taira (Chief Growth Officer, Mistletoe, Inc.), Rajesh Sawhney (Founder, GSF India), Taizo Son (Founder & CEO, Mistletoe, Inc.), and Naho Shigeta ( CEO, Infobridge Holdings)

Mistletoe, GSF India, and Infobridge launch agrifood tech accelerator Gastrotope in India

Taizo Son’s Mistletoe, GSF India, and Infobridge on Thursday announced the launch of agrifood tech accelerator Gastrotope in Bangalore.

Focussing on the Indian market, Gastrotope is a focussed accelerator that aims to invest in startups that can “add value” at various parts of the value chain, from farming, food transportation, processing, delivery, to consumption by customers.

Its vision is to “catalyse the creation of a new agriculture and foodtech enabled industry ecosystem that builds upon India’s rich food diversity and focuses on sustainability throughout the ‘farm to fork’ value chain.”

The accelerator is currently in partnership talks with various government entities, including the government of Andhra Pradesh.

Xprep raised funding led by Rising Stars

Delhi-based edutech startup XPrep raised an undisclosed funding round from Netherland-based venture fund Rising Stars.

Angel investors such as Manish Amin, Pallav Pandey, and Chavi Jafa also participated in the current round.

Founded by Mukul Rustagi and Bhaswat Agarwal, XPrep is a mobile platform that helps tuition centres and coaching institutes conduct their pre- and post- classroom engagement activities with students and parents. It allows tutors to manage time better by automating daily tasks such as information dissemination, assessment conductance, and class notifications.

XPrep plans to use the new funding to strengthen technology, expand product offerings, and fill key positions on the team. The company also said that it is currently in advanced talks for follow-on funding round.

Also Read: Captain’s Log, September 14: Supahands raises pre Series A and a religious video game is in trouble in Southeast Asia

Samsung launches new business unit, fund to further develop autonomous driving

South Korean electronics giant Samsung announced on Thursday that it has set up a strategic business unit for autonomous and advanced driver assistance services (ADAS), as well as a US$300 million fund to invest in automotive startups, according to several media reports.

Announced at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the company also named auto industry veteran John Absmeier as senior vice president of its automotive business unit. He will retain his current position as head of smart machines at the Samsung Strategy and Innovation Center in Silicon Valley.

The new business unit will absorb “hundreds” of Samsung engineers that are already working on autonomous driving tech for the company. It will also sit within Harman, Samsung’s independent subsidiary that works on connected cars and mobile networks.

Samsung already secured licenses for autonomous driving pilot projects in South Korea and the US, particularly in California.

Investree to develop online transaction system of state securities for retail investors

Indonesian peer-to-peer (P2P) lending platform Investree announced that it has been appointed by the country’s Ministry of Finance to run a pilot project that aims to develop online transaction system of state securities for retail investors.

According to a DailySocial report, through the project, users will be able to purchase state securities through the Investree platform.

Set to be implemented in 2018, the project aims to foster greater financial inclusion in Indonesia.

PasarPolis seals deal with Indonesia’s employees social security system agency

Indonesian insurtech platform PasarPolis announced a partnership with the country’s social security system agency (BPJS Ketenagakerjaan), DailySocial reported.

Through the partnership, companies will be able to register its employees for the social security programme through the PasarPolis platform. The platform will also allow them to pay for premium and make insurance claims.

The new feature is set to be able on the platform within the next three weeks.