Remember when "Made in China" was synonymous with a cheap toy or electronic knockoff? Those days are long over. Chinese tech firms, once seen as quaint or copycats, now have Alibaba, Tencent, and Ant Financial counted in the world's top 10 most valuable internet companies, alongside Alphabet, Facebook, and Amazon. And the country's tech economy is taking on, and beating, global rivals. Uber China was bought out by Didi Chuxing in 2016, Tencent's WeChat ecosystem is more ubiquitous than Facebook Messenger, and Chinese bike-sharing companies have recently spawned copycats in the heart of Silicon Valley. Chinese founders are pushing the edge with new business models and disruptive innovations . . . and venture capitalists from both sides of the Pacific are shifting investments in a big way with important implications.
During the past decade, China's share of global venture capital investment has risen from 5 percent to 24 percent. Last year China topped global venture spending in artificial intelligence at 48 percent of $12 billion globally in 2017, compared with the United States at 38 percent. China now accounts for more than 25 percent of the global unicorn companies valued at more than $1 billion. And the US National Science Board predicts that R&D spending in China will outpace the US by next year.
What are the underlying trends driving this techtonic shift? Who are the people and companies to watch? What are the opportunities and challenges for investors and firms in China, Silicon Valley, and beyond?
Carmen Chang, pioneer tech deal maker in China, and Hans Tung, ranked #20 on this year’s Forbes Midas List, are two of the leading venture capitalists deeply involved in bridging Silicon Valley and China. Chang led many seminal deals in China, spanning transactions with Lenovo, Foxconn, and Tencent, as well as IPOs of SMIC, Speadtrum, and others. Tung counts 11 unicorns in his portfolio today, including Meili, Wish, Slack, and Airbnb, as well as Xiaomi, underway for an IPO this summer, the biggest in the global pipeline for 2018.
Join us on Wednesday, June 20, 2018, as leading venture capitalists Carmen Chang, chairman and head, Asia at NEA and Hans Tung, managing partner of GGV Capital, speak with the Exponential Center's Marguerite Gong Hancock about the underlying drivers and implications of the techtonic shift of China's rise in venture capital and tech.
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