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Paktor parent raises fresh US$25m, with Temasek-linked Pavilion Capital among investors

PAKTOR parent M17 Entertainment, which aborted a planned listing this year, announced on Thursday that it has raised US$25 million in a funding round featuring Temasek Holdings-linked Pavilion Capital.

The cash injection from the latest fundraising will go towards technical upgrades and new features for M17's live content-streaming platform, said the company. It also plans to invest in recruiting, training and promoting its content producers or "streamers", and in expanding its content and services.

M17 Entertainment said in a media statement that it expects additional funding in the next two months and added that it is on track for an annual turnover of US$180 million.

Terry Tsang, chief executive of Hong Kong game developer Madhead, led M17 Entertainment's funding this time round. Other investors included Stonebridge Ventures and existing shareholders.

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M17 Entertainment was formed from the 2017 merger of Singapore mobile dating application Paktor and live-streaming platform 17 Media, founded by veteran Taiwanese rapper Jeffrey Huang Li-Tchen. Paktor co-founder Joseph Phua Jiexian became the group CEO of M17.

It had planned an intial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange in June 2018, but trading was delayed and then shelved. M17 later said that it instead turn to private fundraising for US$35 million.

Besides the latest fistful of cash from Pavilion Capital, Vertex Ventures - another subsidiary of Singapore investment firm Temasek - has also backed M17's Paktor in the past.