China VC Weekly: $7M for Nothing, K12 EdTech Financing and More

OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei raises $7 million for Nothing

OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei on Jan. 27 announced the establishment of his London-based new consumer technology startup Nothing, which obtained $7 million in fresh capital last December, marking a new move for his ventures since the Swedish entrepreneur left OnePlus two months ago.

The seed financing round was backed by many renowned tech investors, including “father of the iPod” Tony Fadell, Founders Space CEO Steven Hoffman, Twitch co-founder Kevin Lin, YouTube personality Casey Neistat, Product Hunt CEO Josh Buckley, and others.

Pei has previously revealed that he plans to use the raised money for product research and development, as well as setting up a London office and hiring more talents.

“It’s been a while since anything interesting happened in tech. It’s time for a fresh breeze of change,” commented Pei.
The new brand’s founder also said the mission of Nothing “is to remove barriers between people and technology to create a seamless digital future.”

The brand will be releasing its first smart devices in the first half of 2021.

About Carl Pei
Pei has previously worked for smartphone brands, including Nokia, Meizu and Oppo before he co-founded OnePlus with Pete Lau in 2013.

SEE ALSO: OnePlus Co-founder Carl Pei Obtains $7M Financing For New Startup Nothing

K-12 education platform Huohua Siwei completes Series E round of financing

Online K-12 education platform Huohua Siwei recently completed a Series E round of financing, raising more than $400 million through three stages – the E1, E2 and E3, respectively – of fundraising.

Led by Trustbridge Partners and Tencent Investment, the E3 round raised over $150 million, as the company disclosed on Jan. 24. The first two rounds were instead led by KKR and Tencent, putting in US$150 million and $100 million respectively. 
After the completion of Series E financing, the company’s valuation hit $1.5 billion.

A hot market over the past year, online education has been receiving increasing interest from capital markets. Look no farther than at Edtech unicorn Zuoyebang – the company, backed by investors such as Alibaba Group, obtained $1.6 billion in funds at the beginning of January.

Following the completion of Series E financing, Huohua Siwei, which means Spark Education in Chinese, has become one of the domestic online education companies with the most overseas capital support.

About Huohua Siwei
The company’s products cover two major areas — one is the live classes focusing on mathematical thinking and Chinese, while the other one is the recently-launched brand “Little Sparks AI Class” that covers mathematics, Chinese, and English for young kids. 

GGV Capital raises biggest fun in its 20-year history 

GGV Capital, the VC firm behind tech upstarts, including ByteDance and Didi Chuxing, announced Thursday that it had closed a $2.5 billion funding round—the largest in its 20-year history.

The company also expects to soon close a separate financing round of 3.4 billion yuan, boosting its total assets under management to around $9.2 billion.

The company did not disclose the banes of investors. It’s previous backers included American pension funds, family asset management firms, and universities.

Recently, another prominent local VC firm, Qiming Venture Partners, also announced a that it had raised a new 2.9 billion yuan (around $448 million) fund.

About GGV Capital

Established in 2000 in Singapore and Silicon Valley, GGV Capital is a global venture capital firm that invests in seed-to-growth stage investments across Consumer/New Retail, Social/Internet, Enterprise/Cloud and Smart Tech sectors.