Legend Capital’s semiconductor-focused fund leads $100m Series B for Chinese AI startup

Black Sesame Technologies (Shanghai) Co., Ltd, an artificial intelligence (AI)-enabled digital imaging technology developer, has raised nearly $100 million Series B round led by SL Capital, a semiconductor-focused fund backed by Legend Capital, according to an announcement.

The round was joined by Chinese state-owned automaker SAIC Motor; SK China, an affiliate of South Korean conglomerate SK Group; investment firm China Merchants Capital; Delta Capital; and FengHe Fund Management.

Northern Light Venture Capital (NLVC), an existing Black Sesame backer, also invested in the new round.

The funding raised will be used for product development, software integration and accelerate production, the firm said.

Founded in 2016, Black Sesame Technologies provides solutions for image processing and computing images, as well as embedded sensing platforms. The firm specializes in algorithms for smartphones, autonomous driving, and other consumer electronics.

Last year, it raised Series A funding round led by NIO Capital, the investment firm backed by Chinese electric-vehicle startup NIO.

Legend Capital, which has total assets under management worth 400 billion yuan, is a venture capital subsidiary of Legend Holdings and targets early-stage and expansion-stage investments. The venture capital firm has raised about seven US dollar-denominated funds and four RMB funds.

The Beijing-headquartered venture capital firm had recently led a 200 million yuan ($29 million) Series A funding round for Chinese drug developer Sciwind Biosciences, which is focused on treating metabolic disorders.

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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.