Chinese VC Linear Capital reaches first close of latest USD fund at $110m

Shanghai-based early-stage venture capital firm Linear Capital on Thursday announced the first close of its fourth venture fund, a USD-denominated vehicle, at $110 million.

The first close was completed on May 6 after over four months of fundraising, said Harry Wang Huai, founder and CEO of Linear Capital, in a minute-long video posted on Linear’s WeChat official account.

The fourth fund received re-ups from all major existing limited partners (LPs) of Linear, including an asset management firm, a fund of funds (FOF), companies across multiple sectors, and other investment institutions in Asia, as well as founders of internet companies in China and abroad. The vehicle also obtained support from new investors such as endowment funds, Linear Capital said.

“We believe that frontier technologies, such as data intelligence technology as [a] core example, will bring in [a] huge boost to China’s ongoing industrial upgrading endeavour and efficiency revolution,” said Wang.

Linear was founded in 2014 by former Facebook exec Wang, and Michael Zhang Chuan, a former executive at Chinese e-commerce major JD.com as well as Alibaba’s online shopping sub-brand Tmall. The VC firm now manages four funds with about 2.5 billion yuan ($352 million) in total assets under management (AUM).

The firm, which primarily invests in startups in the data intelligence and frontier technology fields, typically invests $3 million to $5 million in startups at seed and Series A stages of financing.  

Linear claims to have backed over 80 startups worth a combined $12 billion so far. Its portfolio companies are predominantly based in China; it has also made investments in Silicon Valley and Southeast Asia.

Its portfolio companies include AI major Horizon Robotics, cloud-enabled home décor unicorn Kujiale.com, AI-based risk management service Tongdun Technology, augmented reality (AR) products developer Rokid, and Hong Kong-based fintech firm Neat.

In November 2018, Linear closed its RMB-denominated third fund at 500 million yuan ($73 million) from LPs including founders and executives at Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, as well as Chinese internet giants Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent.

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.