SHANGHAI, CHINA, April 28, 2021 – Vastai Technologies (Shanghai) Inc., (hereafter called “Vastai Technologies” or “Vastai”) announced today the closing of a RMB 500 million (about US$77 millions) Series A+ financing round. The round was led by Matrix Partners China and China Internet Investment Fund ("CIIF"), and joined by existing shareholders Redpoint China Ventures, 5Y Capital, SAIF Partners, Glory Ventures, Sirius Capital and Yuan Capital.
This is the company's second major financing round in less than six months, following the US$50 million Series A round announced in November last year, led by Kuaishou, Redpoint China Ventures and 5Y Capital. The financing will help the company further solidify the global commercialization of its in-house developed chips and solutions, expand to other high-growth application domains, as well as attract more outstanding talents.
John Qian, founder and CEO of Vastai Technologies, said, "The AI industry has developed to the stage of practical applications with the gradual maturity of model training. AI has been widely deployed in data center applications, intelligent healthcare, online education, cloud gaming and advanced driver assistance systems. These areas, without exception, have raised extremely high demand for real-time interaction and computing power for massive video processing in the cloud and on the edge. Since the Covid-19 pandemic, people have become accustomed to work in different locations and rely heavily on Internet for social connections with external world. This has led to a growing demand for data centers across industries worldwide and is driving the market demand for cloud and edge-based AI chips. Through core technology development and forward-looking deployment in the early stage, Vastai has gained a great first-mover advantage in the relevant domains. Today, with the further support of our new and existing shareholders, we look forward with full confidence to rapidly pushing our high-performance cloud-based AI+video processing chips and complete solutions to multiple booming industries, and further driving the rapid development and breakthrough of AI applications."
Huadong Wang, partner of Matrix Partners China, said, "The online video applications have surpassed the social networks in terms of daily time spent per user, while the proportion of video traffic on the Internet will grow to 85-90% in the 5G era. Facing increasing user demand for higher video quality and the continuous growth of video product sales, video processing technologies with higher real-time performance and stronger computing power are needed. The core team of Vastai Technologies has distinguished R&D capabilities of high-performance AI+video chips. We look forward to the early adoption of Vastai's products by their core customers to create core value for customers and consumers."
The representative of China Internet Investment Fund said, "The AI acceleration chip is a key development area for new infrastructure, and Vastai's focus on cloud AI inference chips is in line with this important trend. The founders and team not only have rich experience in chip design, AI and video domains, but also have excellent business implementation capabilities and a keen sense of forward-looking planning. The chips designed by Vastai have a high degree of synergy between AI and video processing, and have performance advantages over similar products. Currently, the company is in deep cooperation with leading domestic Internet companies, focusing on AI acceleration and video scenarios, with broad growth space."
David Yuan, founder and managing partner of Redpoint China Ventures, mentioned, "The new domestic and international environment and more Internet-based life and work styles have given rise to an emerging digital economy and rich application scenarios, which need to be supported by AI chips with stronger computing power. As a long-time shareholder, Redpoint has witnessed the strong execution of the Vastai team, which has gathered strong growth momentum after a period of rapid product development and forward-looking market strategy. We are pleased to provide multiple rounds of support and are confident in the company's next step to fully cooperate with core customers in the industry."
Levi Liu, partner of 5Y Capital, further noted, "As one of the earliest institutional investors of Vastai, we are sincerely proud of the achievements of the company in these 2 years! Vastai is one of the fastest growing startups in the global AI chip space, and we have seen the founding team grow from an initial idea 2 years ago to achieve many technical and commercial breakthroughs today. Congratulations to John and Louis for leading the company through thick and thin to make a big step forward! A big step for a startup, yet still a small step in the global AI chip space. With the massive applications of cloud computing and AI in all industries, we firmly believe that the future computing platform will be completely different from today's X86-dominated system. Today's heterogeneous computing acceleration cards will become the main pillar in the architecture of the future computing world, which will breed a huge business opportunity of hundreds of billions or even trillions of dollars. We continue being optimistic about the team's executive ability and strategic vision, and hope that Vastai will become the leader of computing architecture in the future digital world!"
About Vastai Technologies
Founded in December 2018, Vastai Technologies’ mission is to provide high performance intelligent vision processing semiconductors that improve everyday life with abundant visual details and real-time intelligence. Vastai Technologies has R&D centers in Shanghai, Beijing and the Greater Toronto Area. With more than 180 top talents and growing every day, Vastai Technologies is dedicated to becoming one of the leading chip design companies in the world.
For more information, please visit www.vastaitech.com, follow Vastai Technologies on LinkedIn, or read the following EE Times report: Vastai Technologies Raises $77M for Data Center AI Chips | EE Times