China Digest: Neukio Biotherapeutics nets $40m; Shunwei backs Unitree Robotics

Artificial intelligence and robotics converge.

Neukio Biotherapeutics and Unitree Robotics have secured fresh funding.

Neukio Biotherapeutics nets $40m led by LAV

Neukio Biotherapeutics Co, Ltd, a biotech firm that specialises in the R&D of immune cell drugs, has raised $40 million in its angel round led by Lilly Asia Ventures (LAV). 

IDG Capital alongside healthcare-led Chinese investment firm Sherpa Healthcare Partner also joined the round, per a company statement on Friday. 

Neukio plans to invest its first external financing proceeds towards the developments of research infrastructure, immune cell technology platforms and drugs. 

The firm, established in May by Dr Richard Wang who served as founding CEO of Fosun Pharma and Kite Pharma’s joint venue Fosun Kite, targets the oncology area with its generic allogenic cell therapies. 

“Cell therapy will be an important weapon in the fight against cancers. With the deepening understanding of immuno-oncology, and advancement of gene editing technologies, different types of cell therapy will continue to expand the boundaries of cancer therapy,” said IDG Capital investment director Haoyue HU in the statement. 

Shunwei backs Unitree Robotics

Shunwei Capital announced on Friday that it has led a $10-million Series A round funding in quadruped robots specialist Unitree Robotics. 

The new development comes over a year in May last year after Unitree had raised an undisclosed sum in its pre-A++ round from Sequoia Capital China, Temasek-backed Vertex Ventures China, as well as technology and internet-driven Chuxin Capital.

Since its inception in 2016 in Hangzhou, Unitree has been active in the development and commercialisation of quadruped robots and components for consumers. 

Go1, which is the latest proprietary robot product, is able to meet the scenarios such as running and strolling. Unitree said the functions are expanding to conversational AI, photography, among others. 

Unitree’s early-stage investors also include Decent Capital, Var Capital, AIoT innovation and acceleration platform Arm Accelerator, Binhe Capital, among others. 

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.