U.S. investors have plowed billions into China’s AI sector, report shows

WASHINGTON, Feb 1 (Reuters) – U.S. investors including the investment arms of Intel Corp ( INTC.O ) and Qualcomm Inc ( QCOM.O ) account for nearly a fifth of investments in artificial intelligence companies intelligence in China from 2015 to 2021, a report shows. on Wednesday.

The document, released by CSET, a technology policy group at Georgetown University, comes amid growing scrutiny of US investments in AI, quantum and semiconductors, as the Biden administration prepares to unveil new ban on US funding of Chinese technology companies.

According to the report, 167 US investors participated in 401 transactions, or roughly 17% of investments in Chinese AI companies during the period.

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Those transactions represent a total of $40.2 billion in investment, or 37% of the total raised by Chinese AI companies over the 6-year period. It is not clear from the report, which draws on data from data provider Crunchbase, what percentage of the funding will come from US companies.

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Qualcomm Ventures and Intel Capital were involved in 13 and 11 investments in Chinese AI companies respectively, ahead of GGV Capital which led US companies with 43 total investments in the sector, the data showed.

The Biden administration is expected to unveil an executive order this year curbing some US investments in China’s sensitive technology industries, as Washington hawks blame American investors for shifting capital. and significant knowledge of Chinese technology companies that can help improve Beijing’s military capabilities.

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According to the report, US investor GSR Ventures has invested alongside China’s IFlytek Co Ltd (002230.SZ) in a Chinese AI company after the speech recognition company was added to a trade blacklist. Silicon Valley Bank and Wanxiang American Healthcare investments group made investments in Chinese AI firms along with China’s Sensetime before the facial recognition technology powerhouse was added to the same trade blacklist.

The two companies were added to the blacklist, effectively banning them from receiving US tech exports, in 2019 for alleged human rights violations related to the repression of Uighur Muslims.

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Some of the biggest investments include Goldman Sachs’ ( GS.N ) solo investment in 1KMXC, an AI-enabled robotics company, as well as an investment by three US-based VC firms in Geek+ , an autonomous mobile robot company, the report shows. .

Only one Chinese AI company that has received funding from US investors is involved in developing AI applications for military or public safety use, according to CSET.

Reporting by Alexandra Alper; Editing by Stephen Coates

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


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