China’s Yitu Technology has announced the completion its $200 million Series C+, with investors including ICBC International, Gaocheng Venture Capital, and SPDB International, local media is reporting.
The company, which is one of China’s foremost AI startups, has developed technology that can accurately identify individuals from a database of one billion people in just one second. The company has partnered with local public security offices to provide facial recognition solutions. It also provides technologies that enable natural language processing (NLP) and artificial intelligence chips.
Yitu received angel investment in 2013. It then went on to complete its Gaorong Capital-led Series A in 2015. In 2016, it closed its YF Capital-led Series B, and in 2017 it received RMB380 million in Series C investment from Hillhouse Capital, Sequoia Capital, and YF Capital, among others.
The company has also set its sights on the international market. In January 2018, it opened its first overseas office in Singapore. It plans to increase its research capabilities in Southeast Asia and the rest of the world.
China has big ambitions for the domestic development of artificial intelligence technologies. A government plan calls for the country to be at the forefront of AI research by 2030. In the meantime, officials expect to catch up to the rest of the world’s AI capabilities by 2020. In April, China’s SenseTime became the world’s most valuable AI startup after securing $600 million at a valuation of $3 billion.