Sinovation Ventures, a Chinese venture capital firm founded by former Google China head Kai-Fu Lee, has announced the establishment of a RMB2.5 billion (US$391 million) artificial intelligence fund in Guangzhou.
The fund will invest in projects related to AI, big data, education, consumption upgrade and B2B, and will help Guangzhou to develop its AI business chain, Sinovation Ventures said on its official WeChat account.
In a move to help Guangzhou accelerate its AI development, Sinovation Ventures will also set up an AI subsidiary and a research center in the city.
The subsidiary, called Chuangxin Qizhi Guangzhou, will focus on AI+B2B, and provide AI products and solutions for enterprises. Sinovation Ventures AI Institute, an AI lab established in 2016, will add a center in Guangzhou to focus on new retail, manufacturing and finance in China’s southeast region.
Guangzhou, the capital city of Guangdong province, is accelerating its technological investments to catch up with its neighbor city Shenzhen. Last year, Shenzhen with its 12.53 million population created GDP of RMB2.23 trillion (US$349.16 billion) while Guangzhou with its 14.5 million population created GDP of RMB 2.15 trillion (US$336.64 billion). Guangzhou，however, has more universities than Shenzhen.
In April, Sinovation Ventures received an investment tranche of US$50 million from Spanish bank Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria, S.A., or BBVA, for its new US$500 million fund targeting artificial intelligence start-ups.