Chinese chip developer SemiDrive nets nearly $154m in Series B round

Source: Brian Kostiuk/Unsplash

Chinese automotive system-on-chip (SoC) product startup Nanjing SemiDrive Technology Co, Ltd has secured nearly 1 billion yuan ($154 million) in a Series B round, the investee announced on Monday. 

In the statement, it said that the fresh round was co-led by state-owned China Development Bank Capital’s joint fund and smart manufacturing-focused V Fund. 

The round saw participation from a slew of state-backed investors including Bank of China’s overseas investment unit BOC International, Shanghai International Group’s Shanghai Technology Innovation Investment Fund and Shanghai-based Zhangjiang Group’s sub-fund. 

Existing investors – Matrix Partners China, CT Capital, Vertex Ventures China and lithium-ion battery manufacturer CATL’s Chendao Capital – made follow-on investments. 

Chinese investment banks CV Capital and Fanzhuo Capital served as the financial advisors for the deal.

Matrix China, CT Capital, Vertex alongside Sequoia Capital China, Walden International, Lenovo Capital and Accurate Capital had collectively injected 500 million yuan ($77 million) for SemiDrive’s Series A round in 2020. 

The company will deploy the proceeds from the latest round towards chip R&D.  

Co-founded by Jason Zhang and Maggie Qiu in 2018, SemiDrive produces high-performing and ultra-low power SoCs for smart driving. Last year the company released a flagship product, 9 Series SoC, for smart cockpits, autonomous driving and central gateways. The mass production is expected to commence in the second half of 2021, according to its official website. 

The company has forged partnerships with auto-makers China FAW Group Corporation and China Automotive Innovation. 

Headquartered in Nanjing, SemiDrive has R&D centres in Shanghai and Beijing, besides an office in Shenzhen. 

SemiDrive’s early investors also include Lanpu Capital, Vinno Capital, Shanghai-based Cantor Jungle, among others. 

Singapore Reporter/s

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

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  • 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. 
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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.