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SHORT-TERM rental firm Xiaozhu has raised US$120 million in a funding round led by Jack Ma’s Yunfeng Capital, boosting the firm’s financial muscle as it looks to compete with local rival Tujia and U.S. giant Airbnb.

China’s largest house-sharing platform said in a statement yesterday that the fundraising meant it was now a “unicorn startup Dmitrij Jaskin Womens Jersey ,” implying a valuation of over US$1 billion. Airbnb was valued at US$30 billion in a fundraising round last year.

China’s fast-growing middle class is driving a boom in domestic tourism, with younger millennials increasingly looking for alternative options to the traditional tour group vacations of their parents’ generation.

Xiaozhu, however, said the Chinese market was not easy to crack, especially for international firms.

“Only local companies with a sense of mission and commitment to the domestic market can stand a chance in gaining leadership in the Chinese market,” Chen Chi Alexander Steen Womens Jersey , Xiaozhu’s chief executive and co-founder, said in a statement.

Airbnb, which said earlier this year it was looking to expand its presence in the market, denied in April a Chinese media report saying it was in talks with Xiaozhu to work together in markets such as Japan and South Korea.

Xiaozhu has listings in over 400 locations globally and raised US$65 million last November. Existing investors include Joy Capital, Morningside Ventures and Capital Today.

Yunfeng said Xiaozhu had learnt from Airbnb and that the investment round would help accelerate its growth.

“Going off Airbnb’s business model, Xiaozhu has developed a proven successful model for house sharing to develop in China. Yunfeng Capital is looking forward to witnessing and helping Xiaozhu to grow rapidly Brayden Schenn Womens Jersey ,” Yunfeng managing director Li Na said.(SD-Agencies)

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LOS ANGELES, Aug. 8 (Xinhua) -- Marcus Hutchins, a young British computer researcher who helped shut down the WannaCry ransomware attack in May, still remained in custody in Nevada, as his supporters try to raise funds to bail him out.

The hacker community, cybersecurity researchers Scottie Upshall Womens Jersey , and other supporters so far have raised more than 12,000 U.S. dollars for Hutchins, who was arrested in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The judge at Las Vegas court ruled on Friday that Hutchins could be released on a 30,000 U.S. dollar bail, saying the defendant wasn't a danger to the community nor a flight risk Joel Edmundson Womens Jersey , though the judge ordered him to remain in the United States with GPS monitoring.

However, the 23-year-old British cybersecurity researcher was unable to pay the 30,000 U.S. dollar bail and was still being held Monday at a lockup in Nevada, a day before he's due to face charges in federal court in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, according to Business Insider.

Hutchins remains at the Southern Nevada Detention Center Carl Gunnarsson Womens Jersey , about 100 km outside Las Vegas, local media cited Kayla Gieni, a spokeswoman of the facility, as saying.

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