SILICON DRAGON NEWS                                       July 1, 2018         

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June 22-23

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China's Bid To Lead The Electric Vehicle Market Moves Up With XMotors Launch in Silicon Valley
China's bid to lead the electric vehicle market moves up a notch with new Silicon Valley home and team for Alibaba-backed Xpeng Motors -- just one of the Tesla killers from China. Another is China startup unicorn NIO.
China accounts for about half of global electric vehicle  sales, boosted by the Chinese government's handouts such as a $15,000 subsidy, a free driver's license and access to many charging stations.
Xpeng has a head start among dozens of Chinese EV startups given its connection to Alibaba. Co-founder He Xiaopeng, one of China's Internet tycoons, sold his browser startup to Alibaba in 2014 for $5 billion, and Alibaba backed Xpeng at $350 million with Foxconn and IDG Capital in January 2018.
Read more at Forbes: XMotors
Meanwhile, Chinese car manufacturers BYD and CATL are building huge electric vehicle factories in China as the country gears up for only electric vehicles on the road within a few decades.  

Blockchain Innovation with an Asian Spin
Blockchain innovators and investors Mitchell Dong, Lou Kerner, Jalak Jobanputra, Paul Brodsky at
Silicon Dragon NY 2018, June 18, click on video below
    More coverage of Silicon Dragon NY 2018 next week: 
panel on China tech brands
Xiaomi and DJI.  

Jim Robinson New York's RRE Ventures raises $265 million for its newest fund. General Partner Jim Robinson, who spoke at Silicon Dragon's NY event June 18, said then that the firm has faced challenges in getting capital out of China it at least of its Chinese venture deals. Maybe that's why the fund will direct about half of its financial pot to the New York area. There's another reason. Silicon Alley is hot, and we don't just mean the weather in July. 
   Andreessen Horowitz just made a splash but not in China. The Silicon Valley-anchored VC firm has unveiled a $300 million crypto fund co-led by its partner Katie Haun. It definitely seems that Sand Hill Road investors are learning to love crypto. This past week, I attended a crypto pitch night, labeled Cryptonite, at Draper University where judges and investors including famed bitcoin investor Tim Draper and a bunch of startups packed the hall.  
In the ongoing tech and venture capital race between China and the U.S., the Beijing government has weighed in with a $4.6 billion fund of funds, the Beijing Science & Technology Fund, to invest in VC firms worldwide that are backing core technologies, not just business model innovations. Mega funds out of Asia are nothing out of the ordinary: consider Softbank's Vision fund at nearly $100 billion.

  China's fast-growing social shopping company Pinduoduo has filed for a $1 billion IPO in the U.S.  Revenue for the Shanghai company jumped more than three times to $278 million in 2017, and daily active users surpassed this year.  No wonder that JD and Alibaba have been on high alert competing with the Groupon-Facebook mashup that has loads of users in lower-tier cities as its base. It's backed by Tencent and Sequoia Capital China.

China's largest job recruitment site Liepin has listed
on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, seeking to raise $400 million.  Liepin is offering new competition to LinkedIn, which has been doing well in China, counting 41 million users.
China's popular livestreaming app Inke, backed by SAIF Partners and GSR Ventures, is embarking on a $152 million IPO in Hong Kong this week. This comes after  failed attempt for an A share listing through a reverse merger with a Shenzhen-based marketing and communications agency.

Tongcheng-eLong, a Chinese online travel services company backed by Tencent  and domestic travel leader Ctrip, has filed for a Hong Kong IPO.  

Alibaba-backed online parenting porta BabyTree takes steps to a HK IPO.      

 GSR Capital has signed a letter of intent to purchase $160 million in a security token offer by tZero, a blockcain innovator in capital markets that is a subsidiary of  Proceeds from the tZERO Security Token sale will be used to build out securities trading functions to launch a regulated security token exchange, build the team and plan for international expansion. This is a long way from the VC firm's origins as an early stage tech investor. 
C-Bridge leads $20 million financing for China's Nuance
Accel, IDG
lead $19 million round for India's SigTuple
Softbank Vision
leads $200 million funding for India's PolicyBazaar
Singapore's CashShield gets $20 million Series B funding from GGV Capital and Temasek

Indian food delivery startup Swiggy enters unicorn zone with $210 million from Naspers and DST Global

Sizing Up Venture Capital Hotspots  
Silicon Valley: $140 billion
Beijing: $72 billion
New York: $36 billion
Shanghai: $23 billion
Source: CB Insights, capital invested, 2012-May 2018 
Billionaire trio Li Ka-ShingJack Ma and Pony Ma grab a slice of Xiaomi's IPO, expected to be mega.    

A face recognition platform developed by under-35 entrepreneur Yin Qi and funded by Sinovation Ventures for startup  Face++ is transforming the way business is done in China.   MIT Tech Review