Grindr Umbrella Invests in Chinese Self-Driving Startup

Grindr’s owner Kunlun Tech has invested $50 million in self-driving startup Pony.ai in return for a 3% stake in the company.

Excluding its angel round, Pony.ai has now raised a total of $214 million. Representatives confirmed to TechCrunch that this latest money will contribute toward its pre-B round of financing.

Kunlun Tech completed a full takeover of Grindr at the beginning of 2018, for an estimated total of $245 million. Rumoured links with the Chinese Government has led some US commentators to suggest it could be a threat to national security.

At the end of last month, the US Government ordered it to fully relinquish control of Grindr.

Sources from inside Grindr recently revealed that President Scott Chen had moved all internal company messages over to messaging platform WeChat, where he started speaking exclusively in Chinese.

Kunlun Tech has also been invested in the short-video app Musical.ly before it was bought by ByteDance and ultimately integrated into TikTok.

The Indian High Court and other authorities have just reached out to Apple and Google asking for TikTok to be banned in the country, claiming it encourages the creation and distribution of pornography.

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