Caixin
May 04, 2018 02:35 AM
BUSINESS & TECH

Tencent Leads $820 Million Investment in Robot-Maker Ubtech

Ubtech produces consumer humanoid robots for business, entertainment and educational purposes. Photo: VCG
Ubtech produces consumer humanoid robots for business, entertainment and educational purposes. Photo: VCG

Shenzhen-based artificial intelligence (AI) and humanoid-robotic company Ubtech Robotics Inc. Thursday completed fundraising of $820 million, led by internet giant Tencent Holdings Ltd.

The funding round valued 6-year-old Ubtech at $5 billion. Ubtech founder and CEO Zhou Jian said the company will use the capital to enhance research capacity, expand in overseas markets and recruit talent.

Other participating investors include Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, Haier, Telstra, China Minsheng Bank, Juran Zhijia, CreditEase and Green Pine Capital, as well as CDH Investments, which led Ubtech’s previous $100 million funding in 2016.

Ubtech is a developer of consumer humanoid robots for business, entertainment and educational purposes. The company’s products are available in more than 40 countries.

The investment marks another push by Tencent into the emerging AI market. The social media giant has already partnered with Ubtech in robot development, and they jointly launched the educational robot QrobotAlpha in December. Previously, Tencent invested in U.S. robot maker Marble and Canadian robot developer Kindred Systems. Both companies specialize in robots for logistics purpose.

Contact reporter Han Wei (weihan@caixin.com)


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