MARKETS & INVESTING | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Daily Briefing: GCBI Ventures launches blockchain platform for smart cities; VC firm Big Idea Ventures closes US$50m fund

And LTA is raising the Electronic Road Pricing for motorists to $2.

From DealStreetAsia:

Singapore-based GBCI Ventures has launched Building Cities Beyond (BCB) Blockchain, a platform for building smart city solutions.

According to a statement, BCB Blockchain is GBCI’s first venture-built company. BCB will have APIs ready for use to develop various smart city applications such as asset ledgering, e-wallets and payment systems.

GBCI has also announced a minimum allocation of US$10m for investments in smart city projects developed on BCB blockchain. Both GBCI and BCB will launch blockchain accelerators regionally in coming months, with a blockchain-focused fund to be launched soon.

Read more here.

From e27:

New York- and Singapore-based venture capital (VC) firm Big Idea Ventures has made the first close of its US$50m plus fund that is aimed for companies working on the development of new protein alternatives–or meat replacement.

US meat supplier giant Tyson Food has backed the fund, which also included anchor investor Temasek.

The fund has already made its first close in March and aims to close with the targeted number within the next 12 months.

Big Idea Ventures Managing GP Andrew Ive explained that in the first stage of investment, the firm plans to invest US$250,000 in about 100 global companies.

25 to 50 of those companies will be based in Asia whilst the rest will be based in North America.

Read more here.

From Channel NewsAsia:

Motorists will have to pay higher charges at two Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) gantries at peak hours in the morning from May 6.

This comes after the Land Transport Authority's (LTA) quarterly review of traffic conditions on roads and expressways, it said in a news release on Monday (Apr 29).

Motorists will have to pay $2, up from $1, at the gantry on the southbound Central Expressway (CTE) before Braddell Road from 8.30am to 9am.

Drivers passing through the gantry on the Kallang–Paya Lebar Expressway (KPE) after Defu Flyover will have to pay S$4, up from S$3, between 8am to 9am.

The next review of ERP rates will take place in May for the June school holidays, said LTA.

Read more here.

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