Power bank rental company Energy Monster has completed its C round of financing, with a total funding of 500 million yuan. SoftBank Ventures Asia, the corporate venture capital arm of SoftBank Group, led the round with Shunwei Capital and Hillhouse Capital Group following, according to a report by tech media 36Kr.
Previously, in April, Energy Monster already raised $30 million from Hillhouse Capital Group, Xiaomi, Shunwei Capital, New Horizon Capital and Jiawei Gan.
The Chinese venture capital market approached sharing startups cautiously in 2019 after several high-profile flops a year before, including the bike-sharing company ofo. However, the power bank rental business saw a silver lining.
As of this summer, companies collectively increased prices to up to 8 yuan per hour in an effort to reach profitability. Apart from Energy Monsters, other players making a profit include Xiaodian, HiCharge and Go Puck.
In China, shared power banks are ubiquitous at public places including stations, airports, restaurants, cafes and public libraries. According to iiMedia Research, in the first half of 2019, the penetration rate of China’s shared power banks in public places was 31.3%. Data from iiMedia Research shows that in 2019, the number of Chinese shared power bank users will scale up to 305 million, and the number of users will increase to 408 million in 2020.