Y Combinator to set up China arm with ex-Baidu's Qi Lu as CEO

Qi Lu. Photo: Bloomberg

Former Baidu Inc. Chief Operating Officer Qi Lu has been named chief executive officer of Y Combinator China, marking the American startup incubator’s first fully-fledged international effort.

Y Combinator, which has seeded companies including Airbnb Inc., Stripe Inc., Reddit and Dropbox Inc., will start its program in China as soon as next summer, according to an interview with the president of Y Combinator, Sam Altman. In the U.S., the accelerator selects two batches of companies a year that receive financing, advice and connections in exchange for a small percentage of equity. Lu will lead the program, which will be called YC China and will be similar to the U.S. approach, though there may be tweaks to fit the Chinese market, Altman said.

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