Home > Overseas Investment News > China’s Tech Giants Are Pouring Billions into US Start-ups
China’s Tech Giants Are Pouring Billions into US Start-ups
2017-03-16
Brief:China's four largest internet companies — the BAT plus e-commerce company JD.com — have invested $5.6 billion in 48 U.S. tech deals over the past two years.
 
Joseph Chen, CEO of Renren
 
Joe Chen, CEO of Chinese social networking service Renren, first met SoFi CEO Mike Cagney in Palo Alto in 2011 and, over coffee, decided to invest in the fast-growth, disruptive online finance start-up. That initial $4 million investment helped SoFi get its start and led to two more financings within three years, with Renren contributing a major chunk of some $230 million raised.
 
Fast-forward, and SoFi last month topped it off with a $500 million investment from private-equity powerhouse Silver Lake.
 
SoFi is just the kind of deal that Chen has been pursuing: His NYSE-listed company, once known as the Facebook of China, has been investing in fast-growth tech start-ups to broaden its revenues and boost its stock price. That connection with Renren has also boosted SoFi.
 
"Joe is a great investor and was our investor from the early days. Hesaw the vision early on and pushed us to grow faster and be more aggressive," said Dan Macklin, a co-founder of SoFi in San Francisco.
 
Similarly to Renren, China's tech titans Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent are leading a surge of Chinese investment in cutting-edge U.S. technology start-ups with bold ambitions to expand their footprint, attract top talent and gain an edge in innovation.
 
Collectively known as the BAT, China's giant technology companies that dominate search, e-commerce and mobile messaging in their home market are going global. The United States is their primary shopping place to diversify and build out their brands. The hunt is on to acquire or buy into fast-growing young companies in a broad range of the hottest tech sectors, such as virtual reality, fintech, social media, video games and mobile apps. Their deals include such well-known American brands as image messaging app Snap, ride-sharing service Lyft and virtual reality player Magic Leap.
China's four largest internet companies — the BAT plus e-commerce company JD.com — have invested $5.6 billion in 48 U.S. tech deals over the past two years, according to CBI Insights data. California took in more than three-quarters of the total U.S.-based deals by these four companies, with Silicon Valley a popular hunting ground.

CNBC
Relevant Information