New USD 250M Kuang-Chi GCI Fund Focuses on Israel Tech Opportunities
Portfolio Companies to Benefit from Collaboration with China Technology Leader
TEL AVIV, Israel, Jan. 11, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Kuang-Chi Group, a Shenzhen based technology conglomerate announced today the launch of its Global Community of Innovation (GCI) Fund II and the opening of its Israel-based International Innovation Headquarters. As the first Chinese fund of its kind, GCI Fund is targeting companies that seek collaboration with local Chinese firms for entry into their domestic markets. GCI Fund II will invest US$250 million in global technology companies active in the areas of: smart city/smart home, IoT, artificial intelligence, VR/AR and robotic, and be supported by a new China-based incubator, established by Kuang-Chi to help bring its portfolio companies to the Chinese market.
Dr. RuopengLiu, Chairman of Kuang-Chi, said: “We were able to quickly deploy the US$50-million GCI Fund I in exceptional companies that operate in sectors we know well and we’d like to build on this momentum with Fund II.” “Working with our partner in Israel, we’ve identified a wealth of opportunities to expand our portfolio and give our joint investment team an expanded strategic and financial mandate.”
Dorian Barak, a veteran Israeli venture investor and now the Global Strategy Officer of Kuang-Chi, stated that GCI Fund’s investment is “creating unique opportunities for start-ups, particularly those from Israel.” “China represents a natural market for Israeli firms developing technology in the areas of smart cities, computer vision, connected home, artificial intelligence, and robotics,” he said.
GCI Fund I was established in 2016, and now has stakes in several Israeli companies, including: computer vision pioneer eyeSight; voice analytics developer Beyond Verbal; and, video intelligence and analytics provider AgentVi. The Fund also invested in Norwegian biometric authorization innovator Zwipe, Canadian aviation company SkyX.
Earlier, Kuang-Chi established a foothold in the aviation sector with investments in Canada-based company SolarShip, and Australia’s Martin Jetpack. In the telecommunications field, the company has a significant investment in Southeast Asia telecommunications provider Hyalroute.
Yangyang Zhang, Kuang-Chi co-founder and CEO of KuangChi Science, the Hong Kong listed affiliate of the Kuang-Chi Group, stated, “We have moved from success to success in Israel, and I’m delighted by the pace of our good progress showed in our recent investments in eyeSight, AgentVi and Beyond Verbal”, he said.
Within six months of its investment, Kuang-Chi and eyeSight jointly built a local team in China to provide markets with the most advanced embedded computer vision solutions currently available. In December, Beyond Verbal signed its first cooperation agreement in China, with the Second Affiliated Hospital Zhejiang University School of Medicine in Hangzhou.
According to Liu, “GCI portfolio companies will share access to cutting-edge technology that includes over 2,000 patents and R&D from around the world. Each of these investments comes with an opportunity to expand their business in China and establish relationships with global market leaders across multiple industries.”
Founded in 2010 with a five-person team, Kuang-Chi has created a Global Community of Innovation of more than 2,600 employees in 18 countries and regions which is dedicated to disruptive innovation and principal investment in cutting-edge technology sectors including communications, metamaterials, and space technology. Kuang-Chi’s subsidiary company KuangChi Science Limited (00439.HK) is concentrated on the development of future technology. The Group also operates through Shenzhen-traded Zhejiang Longsheng (002625.SZ) and Martin Aircraft Company (ASX: MJP), as well as research institutes and private companies.