Leshi’s TV-Making Arm Founds Culture and Media Unit With New Funds From Tencent, JD–Yicai Global

What happened: A TV-focused branch of Leshi which belongs to debt-laden LeEco has set up a “Culture and Media” company in Beijing using RMB 50 million in funds. The subsidiary that set up the unit is Lerong Zhixin Electronic Technology, which attracted a total investment of RMB 600 million from Tencent and JD.com earlier this year. The new company will deal in consumer electronics, computers, software, sporting goods, and auxiliary equipment, Yicai reports. In addition, it aims to produce and broadcast TV shows and take charge of culture- and art-related activities. Lerong Zhixin’s stock price rose after the high-profile investments while the two tech titans each hold a 2.78% stake in the company.

Why it’s important: Leshi is reportedly still owed RMB 6.7 billion by its parent company LeEco, which is currently due to be paid by former LeEco CEO Jia Yueting. Despite the financial uncertainty, the subsidiary Lerong Zhixin appears to be prospering from growing interest in smart electronics. Both Tencent and JD.com have already launched smart speakers; intelligent TVs and related products seem to also fall into their plans for expansion.

Bailey Hu is based in China’s hardware capital, Shenzhen. Her interests include local maker culture, grassroots innovation and how tech shapes society, as well as vice versa.

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