The Beijing-based startup provides artificial intelligence chips used in autonomous cars, surveillance cameras and other smart devices.
In October, China Money Network had reported that Horizon Robotics was looking to raise between $500 million and $1 billion from new investors including an unnamed semiconductor company of the same size as its existing backer Intel Corporation.
Co-founded by Yu Kai, who previously led a self-driving project for Internet major Baidu, Horizon Robotics’ other investors include Hillhouse Capital, Harvest Investments, Morningside Venture Capital, Wu Capital, Linear Ventures, Sequoia Capital and Vertex Ventures, among others.
In 2017, Horizon Robotics had raised $100 million in a Series A+ round backed by Intel.
According to Tsinghua University’s June 2018 China Artificial Intelligence Development Report, investments and financing in Chinese AI companies over the last five years accounted for 60 per cent of the global total. China had more than 1,100 AI companies, about half the US total, as of June 2018.
SenseTime became the world’s most valuable AI startup after it raised a $600-million investment led by Alibaba Group earlier this year at a $4.5-billion valuation. Meanwhile, Bytedance, which is now the world’s largest internet firm with a $75-billion valuation, has intensively invested in AI as it uses AI-driven algorithms for its content platform.
China has an ambitious plan to grow its AI industry to a $150-billion market by 2030. It is supporting this goal by offering funding to AI-related companies, special grants to startups in the field and increased support for AI-related academic research, said a report by financial services group UBS.
Alibaba alone plans to invest $15 billion until 2020 to build R&D labs as it aims to become a global AI leader.