Silicon Dragon 2.0 Fuels This Super-Hot Tech Economy

cropped, Silicon Dragon book cover for HomiWhat’s fueling this super-hot tech economy? China advances! Silicon Dragon has moderated several VC panels in the past few weeks, and the conclusion from hearing the “VC speak” is:
Don’t be too concerned about the bubble bursting despite the recent, numerous unicorn financings of startups, with China leading the way with 7 of the 10 most highly valued startups outside the U.S.  There is still so much growth left in China — the digital economy is far from saturated like it is in the western world. And there are many more types of technology today than with the dotcom era. Check out Forbes for more.

Going Global from the start is increasingly a theme too – not only from China but from the U.S. to China and other large overseas emerging market such as India.
My panelists at F50 – David Xu of Angel Camp, Amit Shah of Artiman Ventures, Shahin Farshchi of Lux Capital — shared stories of this going global first trend, and emphasized it’s a plus for startups’ fund-raising.

DEALS
Qiming Venture Partners
, showing its healthcare investing knowhow, has led an $18 million financing of Beijing-based medical imaging startup Infervision, which uses an AI tool to detect cancer.

WI Harper has co-led a $17.5 million, second round in biopharma R&D outfit XW Laboratories in Wuhan.  billion in Indonesia online marketplace Tokopedia. Existing investors KPCB China and Johnson & Johnson signed on again.

Temasek and Sumitomo Corp. have put $300 million in Taiwanese electric scoooter maker Gogoro, known as the Tesla of scooters.

FUNDS
Seeking to leverage Hong Kong’s improving ecosystem for startups, Beyond Venture is launching a fund expected to be in the range of  $128 million to back startups. Backed by Hony Capital, Beyond Ventures plans to focus on B2B services.

The Hong Kong government’s plan to support local startups is underway with the launching of an Innovation and Technology Venture Fund with a pot of $256 million for co-investment with venture capital funds in Hong Kong’s emerging tech companies. The government matches VC investments at a 1 to 2 ratio with VC deals capped at $7.6 million. VC funds can apply for the scheme  up until January 18, 2018.

M&A
 51Job, a Chinese HR service and early lister on Nasdaq, is investing $120 mllion in Beijing-based online recruitment platform Lagou.com,  for a 60 percent stake.

IPOs
Secoo
Secoo went public on Nasdaq, the first e-commerce IPO since Alibaba three years ago. The China online retailer backed by IDG Capital along with Japanese and French investors raised $140 million.  

NOTEWORTHY
Greater China startups were everywhere to be seen this past week in the Bay Area at a series of tech, VC and startup events, including a gung-ho Guangzhou dinner. We caught up with a group of tech entrepreneurs from Hong Kong’s Cyberport at Disrupt SF. See below.

Cyberport at Disrupt

Silicon Dragon’s Rebecca Fannin with founders of Aspire, Find Solution, iLearners, Mindflo, Origami Labs, Automated Machine Learning, Team Concepts and Valoot Technologies, and Alice So of Cyberport.

  

Startup honcho William Bao Bean of SOSV fame jammed in 3 red-eye flights in one week (something Silicon Dragon has been known to do – once!), racing to catch the Asia tech bubble. In Australia, he warned Aussie startups to avoid entering faraway China unless they really know what they’re doing, have a local partner and understand the culture. Good advice!