China

Beijing #5

Beijing is a vibrant city for venture capital and startups. With a large pool of talent from top universities, the presence of multiple technology corporations, and access to capital, it has ample resources to help startups to grow.

Heng Teck Yong
Partner, Pegasus Capital
#1 Global Ecosystem: Knowledge
#2 Global Ecosystem: Performance
#2 Global Ecosystem: Talent & Experience

Highlights

The Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics spotlighted not just athletic greatness, but also Beijing’s growing status as a startup and technology hub. The Games showcased advances in 5G, AI and Robotics, self-driving vehicles, telemedicine, and smart venue management. China Unicom, the event’s official telecommunications service provider, built an intelligent vehicle networking system that supported a self-driving car to carry the Olympic torch. It also helped test four types of unmanned vehicles including buses and delivery vehicles. Meanwhile, China is accelerating its ambitious program to support startups in industries such as chipmaking and biotech. The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology is set to name approximately 3,000 "little giant" startups in 2022. The designation provides startups with special incentives and signals to investors, employees, and potential corporate partners that the companies enjoy a special endorsement by the government. China is building Huairou Science City in the northeastern suburbs of Beijing to provide laboratories and infrastructure for advanced research. In March 2022, five experimental stations opened to users. More than 50 applications have been received from domestic and foreign teams, according to the Huairou Park of the Institute of Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences. The 5th International Conference on Network Technology will be held in Beijing in October 2022. Notable recent funding news out of Beijing includes Edtech Fenbi’s $390 million Series A in February 2021, augmented reality startup Nreal’s $60 million Series C in March 2022, and security threat intelligence company ThreatBook’s ¥300 million yuan ($47 million) Series E, also in March 2022.

Ecosystem by the numbers

TOTAL EARLY STAGE FUNDING
(2019H2-2021)
$9.5 bn
GLOBAL AVG.
$687 m
ECOSYSTEM VALUE
(2019H2-2021)
$795 bn
GLOBAL AVG.
$28.6 bn
MEDIAN SEED ROUND (2019H2-2021)
$1500 k
GLOBAL AVG.
$671 k
MEDIAN SERIES A ROUND (2019H2-2021)
$10 m
GLOBAL AVG.
$4.7 m
SOFT. ENGINEER SALARY (2021)
$45 k
GLOBAL AVG.
$46 k
432
GLOBAL AVG.
11.3
283
GLOBAL AVG.
101
Amount ($B)
Count (#)

Exits

(2017-2021)
EARLY-STAGE FUNDING GROWTH TIER (2018/19 VS. 2020/21)
1
Calculated on a scale of
1 (lowest) to 10 (highest)
TOTAL VC FUNDING (2017-2021)
$86 bn
GLOBAL AVG.
$4.5 bn
TIME TO EXIT (2017-2021)
8 years
GLOBAL AVG.
9.4 years

Sub-Sector Strengths

AI, Big Data & Analytics

Beijing is home to 1,070 AI companies, over a quarter of China’s total. Tech hub Zhongguancun alone hosts 10 AI labs and 9,000 tech companies. The IEEE International Conference on Computer Communication and Artificial Intelligence is held in Beijing. Xiaoice’s AI referee and coaching system not only helped train domestic athletes for the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games, but also participated in judging more than 40 test events. AI and IoT platform Terminus Technologies raised a $93 million Series B in September 2021. AI startup Aibee raised $100 million in venture funding in March 2022.

Fintech

Beijing has ranked #1 among global Fintech hubs for three consecutive years by the Global FinTech Hub Report. Co-organized by Tsinghua University PBC School of Finance and more than 30 other colleges and universities, and sponsored by Tsinghua University Fintech Research Institute, the 2021 China Fintech Research Conference was held in Beijing to promote research around Fintech. The Fintech World Forum will take place in Beijing in June 2022. Blockchain startup Cobo raised a $40 million Series B in September 2021.

Reasons to move your startup to Beijing

Infrastructure for Advanced Research

A cluster of advanced research institutions is currently being constructed in ​​Huairou Science City. The cluster will accommodate 5,000 people on a site spanning approximately one square kilometer with laboratories and other facilities for cutting-edge science.

Research Funding

The National Natural Science Foundation of China has set up the Research Fund for International Scientists (RFIS) to support foriegn scientists who are ready to conduct basic research in China. RSIF offers scientists up to $125,000 per year per project and is open to all research areas within the NSFC’s funding scope. Projects are expected to start in 2023.

Startup Community

Startup Genome
Partners

91Maker
China Accelerator
Creative Young Community
Cyzone Innoway BJ
Dao Ventures
DayDay Up
Legend Star
Magma Partners
Makes-global
Noodle & Meetup
Plug and Play China
Sinavation Ventures
Startup Grind
Suhehui
Technode
Ventures Lab

Get connected

Are you interested in diving deeper into this ecosystem? Drop us a message. Our Ambassadors and Partners can plug you in.