China VC Weekly: Social Networking for the Elderly, Unmanned Retail Services and More
As China emerges from the weeklong Lunar New Year break, local VC institutions have announced several prominent new deals. Among those: social networking platform for the elderly Hongsong raised a $100 million Series A+ round, while Feng E Zu Shi, a company specializing in unmanned retail, bagged $47 million. Read more below.
Social Networking Platform for Retirees Hongsong Raises $100 Million in Series A+ Funding Round
Chinese startup Beijing Hongsong Online Technology, which operates a social networking site for retirees called “Hongsong,” has raised nearly $100 million in a Series A+ funding round.
The round was led by Bertelsmann Asia Investments. It was also joined by existing investors CCV, Matrix Partners China and BlueRun Ventures.
Founded in 2019, Hongsong focuses on meeting the needs of senior citizens in the country who have retired. It aims to tap into China’s expanding demographic groups that have leisure time, spending power and a higher quality of life than previous generations of elderly citizens.
Unmanned Retail Services Firm “Feng E Zu Shi” Secures $47 Million in A-Round Financing
Chinese unmanned retail operations firm called Feng E Zu Shi announced its completion of A-round financing totaling 300 million yuan ($47 million). The leading investor is SoftBank Ventures Asia, while co-investors are CICC Cultural Consumption Industry Equity Investment Fund under CICC Capital and Shenzhen Capital Group.
After this round of financing, Shenzhen Mingde Holding Development Co., Ltd., which is also the controlling shareholder of major Chinese logistics firm SF Holding, and SoftBank Ventures Asia are the two largest shareholders. The funds are mainly for accelerating scale and growth, improving operational efficiency and enhancing service quality.
About Feng E Zu Shi
Feng E Zu Shi was incubated by SF Express in 2017. As a sales service provider, it targets white-collar workers in offices, offering breakfast, afternoon tea, snacks and other beverages. It has expanded consumption scenarios from offices to semi-open areas such as logistics parks, mass creation spaces, factories, government agencies, schools and hospitals.
Industrial Robot Firm Rokae Bags $63M in Strategic Financing
Beijing-based robotics firm Rokae recently obtained strategic financing of 400 million yuan ($63.16 million), according to a tech media outlet 36Kr. The investor in this round is New Hope Group, an agribusiness company.
In the field of automobile parts, Rokae has previously served Valeo, Schaeffler and other well-known top tier manufacturers in the global auto industry.
Founded in 2015, Rokae’s products are mainly high-performance industrial robots and flexible cooperative robots. Relying on these flexible cooperative robot products, Rokae can provide users in the automobile and 3C fields with services that meet high requirements for refinement, such as installing chips with mechanical arms.
For clients in the medical field, the company’s flexible cooperative robot has realized joint replacement surgery application, teleoperation and remote ultrasound applications. It has reached cooperation with more than 20 leading medical enterprises that develop surgical robots. In addition, Rokae began to explore the coffee and retail industries, providing services such as latte art, ice cream and milk tea making with robots.
SEE ALSO: Industrial Robot Firm Rokae Bags $63M in Strategic Financing
Autonomous Driving Truck Supplier Qingtian Completes Angel Round of Financing
Qingtian Truck Technology, an automated driving truck company, recently announced the completion of an angel round financing worth nearly $10 million, led exclusively led by 5Y Capital. The funds raised in this round will be mainly used to help the company to expand its team and road test its automated driving vehicles.
The two founders of the firm are Pan Zhenhao, the former CTO of Pony.ai’s truck business PonyTron, and Sun Youhan, the former leader of PonyTron’s planning and control team in the US. 5Y Capital used to be the leading investor in Pony.ai’s round A of financing.
About Qingtian Truck Technology
Founded in November 2021, Qingtian Truck Technology is a startup dedicated to the R&D of automated truck driving technology and transportation logistics. At present, the company has 20 employees, all of whom have extensive experience in automated driving.
Zhipu Technologies Completes Rounds A and A+ of Financing
Recently, Zhipu Technologies announced that it had secured several hundred million yuan in a round A and round A+ of financing deals. Round A featured exclusive investment by Chengwei Capital while round A+ was led by GL Ventures and followed by Chengwei Capital. These two rounds of financing will be used for product research and market development in the field of spectral vision in the future.
The founding team of the company hails from Nanjing University and Tsinghua University. Cao Xun, the founder of the company, has devoted himself to computational photography for many years, and the first theoretical achievements of PMVIS spectral video imaging have been published in the most influential journals and conferences in China and abroad.
About Zhipu Technologies
Founded in 2018, Zhipu Technologies is an enterprise focusing on spectral vision. The company relies on self-developed intelligent spectral imaging equipment and spectral vision analysis systems to help end users move beyond bottlenecks that could not be crossed in the past.