Understand what moves China tech with us — we roundup what you need to know about the local venture scene every Thursday morning 8am (GMT +8). The big investment stories, MNC partnerships, noteworthy startups, most invested industries of the week and more.
This is only a preview of what you’ll get in your inbox — Get the full picture by subscribing to China Venture Roundup
MNCs in China
HOZON Auto, which owns the EV brand Nezha, closed its Series D round, raising an estimated RMB 3 billion (USD 467 million). China’s largest cybersecurity company, Qihoo 360, led this round as a strategic investor and became the company’s second-largest shareholder. In December 2020, HOZON Auto completed its Series C round with RMB 2 billion (USD 308 million) raised. The capital will be poured into R&D for its intelligent cockpit and smart driving.
Going Public: IPOs
On May 7, Chinese online insurance technology firm Waterdrop debuted on the New York Stock Exchange with the ticker code WDH. Established in 2016, Waterdrop’s main businesses include mutual aid and insurtech. The company has established a huge social network that offers crowdfunded financial assistance to patients who cannot afford their medical expenses. So far, Waterdrop has served nearly 80 million users, 70% of whom are from smaller cities and towns.
KrASIA News Picks
Chinese listeners are getting into podcasts, with a host of platforms carving out their own niche
Many tech trends have emerged in the past year as consequences of the coronavirus. There were verticals that attempted to align lockdown life with pre-pandemic routines, like online education, telemedicine, and e-groceries. And there were fields where memes displaced boredom to form bubbles, like cryptocurrencies and NFT art sales.
Amid all of this, the podcast boom in China has been refreshing, largely because it evoked a shared memory of a time when the radio was always buzzing and the airwaves were not heavily mediated by platforms. Creators of every stripe are finding their footing on newly launched apps and platforms, and listeners are tuning in.
Despite its relatively small size, China’s podcasting community remains a force to be reckoned with for its unparalleled originality and content quality.