Intel Capital sends $500m to China
Intel Capital, the US processor manufacturer's investment firm, has already completed its first round of venture capital investments in Chinese IT companies that was launched in 2005. Now, Intel Capital has announced that it will be investing an additional $500m in projects related to wireless broadband, media, telecommunications, and clean tech.
Founded in 1991, the holding company says it invests in shares and strategic acquisitions to promote the growth of technologies and improve both the office and home environment. Intel Capital says it has been involved in China for 10 years and that it has invested in 70 companies in Hong Kong and the People's Republic during that time. Three years ago, the firm created the Intel Capital China Technology Fund with a volume of $200m to promote local IT innovations, the continuing growth of China's IT sector, and the spread of the Internet.
Holdfast Online Technology, which is developing a platform for LAN-based console games, is one of the companies that will be receiving funding from this latest round of investments. Newauto Video Technology are another, a provider of video equipment, network technology, and system integration for TV broadcasters. The company's technology can for example be used to broadcast live sports events. According to the press release, Newauto is a service provider for the Olympic Games scheduled to begin in August in Beijing.
In light of the criticism of the human rights situation in China, voiced during the current torch-bearing ceremony in London and recently in Paris, companies investing in China or sponsoring the Olympic Games now find themselves having to justify their actions. But in the Financial Times Deutschland, a Chinese corporate consultant says that events in Tibet have not caused any Olympic sponsors to withdraw support. He believes that in the minds of these companies, a market with 1.3 billion consumers outweighs any damage to corporate image in the West.
Intel only briefly mentions the Olympic Games in its press release. Ian Yang, vice president of Intel China, is quoted saying that the Games and the 30-year anniversary of economic reforms and the opening of the Chinese market make 2008 a very important year for China. Yang says his company will continue to promote the development of China's IT industry in urban and rural areas.