Silicon Dragon News: Israel Was Place To Be
China & Israel:
How Long Will The Love Affair Last?
Deal making between China and Israel was explored by a panel of top venture capitalists at the recent
Silicon Dragon event in Tel Aviv.
Certainly, it seems the pros currently outweigh the cons. But this could be short term.
Capital is pouring into Israeli venture funds from China while their portfolio companies are raising strategic finance from Chinese multinationals and expanding into the Mainland for accelerated growth. It’s a source of capital and growth that’s very hard to turn down. More and more Israelis are making long trips to Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou and Shenzhen and elsewhere not to miss out.This China-Israel link is set to grow as more and more deals are blocked between the U.S. and China. Chinese dealmakers will look to alternatives beyond Silicon Valley to park money, and importantly, to gain an edge in technology innovation.
But, always be cautious, warned Israeli VC Avishai Silvershatz of the Infinity Group. Both groups negotiate extremely well. Both have breakthrough technology. Both need each other. How long will the love affair last?
OurCrowded In Focus
Israel was the place to be last week with multiple investor/innovation events going on such as the OurCrowd equity crowdfunding event held in Jerusalem.
The summit marked OurCrowd’s $650 million of funds raised for 145 startups and 12 venture funds since its start in 2013 by Jon Medved (photo). Several new initiatives were announced:
– a partnership with incubator Labs/02, Reliance Industries, Motorola and a Hebrew University tech transfer company to invest in up to 100 emerging companies over the next 10 years, supported by the Israel Innovation Authority
– launch of a $50 million sports tech fund, backed by LeAD Sports, an accelerator spearheaded by grandchildren of the Adidas family
– formation of a $100 million AI-focused Cognitive fund
FUNDING / M&A DEALS
Another Chinese electric vehicle startup, LeapMotor in Hangzhou, has closed financing. Sequoia Capital China, which has invested in two other Chinese new energy automotive companies, led the financing that amounted to $62 million.
Zeroing in on India, Alibaba unit Ant Financial has invested $200 million in India’s restaurant search and food delivery service Zomato, in a unicorn-sized deal that values the startup at more than $1 billion.
Chinese livestreaming app Kuaishou has wrapped up a $1 billion funding round led by Tencent with the aim of expanding its empire overseas. Plans are reportedly afoot to go public this year.
Google and Tencent have teamed up with Sequoia Capital China to co-invest $15 million in Chinese artificial intelligence pharmaceutial startup XtalPai, based in Boston and Shenzhen.
China’s PingAn Global Voyager Fund has led a $25 million investment in New York-based telehealth innovator TytoCare. The funding from the large insurance group will be used to enter China markets and grow U.S. sales of its products that allow for common medical tests at home without visting a doctor. Strategic investors included Walgreens and OrbiMed.
An unnamed Hong Kong blockchain fund has acquired Chinese crypto exchange BTCC, originally funded by Lightspeed China in a deal that Silicon Dragon highlighted on stage with founder and investor way back in 2013.
Baidu Ventures has marked the first close of a second AI-focused fund at $317 million. The venture arm of Baidu has made several bets on medical and robotics startups.
Sequoia Capital China is planning to raise a mega $8 billion fund to invest in later stage deal that are closer to an IPO.
Pharma company Luye is mulling a $500 million IPO in Singapore after expanding in China and Asia. It’s backed by Qiming Venture.
Why Tencent and Sequoia are pouring millions into China’s rental space. Bloomberg.
Investors Readying for Mega China Tech IPOs, for CNBC
by Silicon Dragon founder/author Rebecca Fannin.