Chinese Robot Goes Mad, China VC On Trump, Paulson Invests in Didi, Indian IoT
In news of the weird from the world of robotics, a Chinese robot nicknamed “Fatty” went out of control at a China high-tech fair in Shenzhen, smashing a glass window and injuring a visitor. Apparently, it was all human error – the robot operator hit the forward button instead of reverse.
A Chinese media company has formed a $300 million fund with a media and entertainment company in Abu Dhabi to make movies and TV shows in Hollywood. The deal, forged by state-owned China Intercontinental Communication Center with Image Nation Abu Dhabi, is another sign of China’s infatuation with Hollywood.
Eric Li, co-founder of Shanghai-based VC firm Chengwei Capital, sounds off about the recent U.S. presidential campaign. He writes that President-elect Donald Trump makes it sound as though making America great is defeating China. But he adds that much of the Chinese public supported him, and Beijing is looking forward to change in Washington. Read full viewpoint, NY Times.
Hedge fund billionaire John Paulson, an economic adviser to Trump during the campaign, has taken an investment stake in the privately owned Chinese ride-sharing app Didi Chuxing. This is the same Didi that acquired Uber China and has backing from Alibaba and Apple. Read more.
The Overseas Press Club, the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations, the Asia Society’s ChinaFile and Silicon Dragon co-hosted a forum to discuss China’s move from a manufacturing powerhouse into an “innovation nation” by 2025. Panelists included Orville Schell, the Arthur Ross Director of the Center on U.S.-China Relations at Asia Society; Weiping Wu, a professor of urban planning at Columbia University; and Yu Zhou, co-editor of China As An Innovation Nation and professor of geography and Asian studies at Vassar College. The moderator was William J. Holstein, business journalist and author of seven books, including Has The American Media Misjudged China? View Video, Silicon Dragon + at OPC.
China could become a world leader in the field of artificial intelligence, finds a report by IResearch Consulting Group. Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen lead development in East Asia, and account for 7.4 percent of the world’s AI firms. AI is seen as the next new opportunity in technological innovation.
Now used-car dealerships in car-crazy China are getting funded. Chinese car dealership Souche got a $100 million investment from Alibaba’s Ant Financial and a chauffeured car service, UCar Inc. It was a series C fund raising for Souche, a second-hand automobile dealer. Sequoia Capital China backed Souche in 2013 with a $10 million, earlier round.
Chinese online education service Mofangge has reportedly raised $22 million in a second fundraising by undisclosed investors for the three-year-old startup that previously raised significant capital from Fosun Kinzon Capital.
China’s hardware ecosystem might actually translate well in software savvy India, which is seeing a growing but still very early Internet of Things market. That’s the view of Benjamin Joffe, a partner at HAX Accelerator in Shenzhen. He emphasizes that India lacks resources for prototyping and early investment, and has a weak supply chain. Still, by connecting with Shenzhen, India could progress in IoT.