Caixin
Jul 19, 2021 08:26 PM
FINANCE

Credit Suisse’s Ex-China Chief Joins AI Startup SenseTime

What’s new: Credit Suisse Group AG’s former China chief Tang Zhenyi has been made vice president of Chinese artificial intelligence startup SenseTime Group Ltd., Caixin has learned.

Tang, 47, ended his two-year tenure at the Swiss bank on Friday and will join Hong Kong-based SenseTime this week, working together with co-founders Xu Li and Xu Bing, people close to SenseTime told Caixin.

Credit Suisse said in a press release on July 9 that Janice Hu would succeed Tang as Greater China CEO. Among other duties, Hu will be responsible for driving the bank’s onshore business and regulatory activities to further expand its presence in the region.

The background: Prior to his pivot to the tech sector, Tang has held several positions in finance.

Before heading up Credit Suisse’s China office, he was chairman of CLSA Ltd., a brokerage owned by the state-run Citic Securities Co. Ltd. — China’s largest securities firm by assets — from January 2017 to February 2019, according to his LinkedIn profile. He joined Citic Group Corp. Ltd., a major shareholder of Citic Securities, in 2011.

Previously, Tang altogether spent 10 years at China’s Ministry of Finance and four years at the World Bank. He holds an MBA from the University of Maryland.

SenseTime is one of the domestic “AI quartet” developing facial recognition technology — with the other three being Megvii Technology Ltd., Shanghai Yitu Internet Technology Co. Ltd. and CloudWalk Technology Co. Ltd.

The U.S. Department of Commerce placed SenseTime, Megvii and Yitu on its entity list, a trade restriction list, in October 2019, and CloudWalk in June 2020, essentially banning the Chinese firms from obtaining exported items from American companies.

Quick Takes are condensed versions of China-related stories for fast news you can use. To read the full Caixin article in Chinese, click here.

This story has been updated to correct the city where SenseTime is based. Its global headquarters is in Hong Kong.

Contact reporter Kelsey Cheng (kelseycheng@caixin.com) and editor Heather Mowbray (heathermowbray@caixin.com)

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