According to public documents, China’s state-backed chip investment fund invested 14.56 billion yuan ($1.99 billion) in Changxin Xinqiao, a memory chip business.
The deal saw China Integrated Circuit Industry Investment Fund, also known as the “Big Fund”, contribute to 33.15% of the total registered capital of Changxin Xinqiao, according to an update dated Oct. 26 to the company’s registration information on the National Enterprise Credit Information Publicity System.
Changxin Xinqiao was created in 2021 in Hefei, Anhui province’s easternmost city, according to the business registration website Qichacha.
Zhao Lun, its general manager, is also the chairman and general manager of Changxin Memory Technology, one of China’s major memory chip businesses.
Changxin Xinqiao and the Big Fund did not immediately answer to requests for comment from Reuters.
The Big Fund’s newest investment follows a 13 billion yuan investment in Yangtze Memory Technologies (YMTC) earlier this year, which was one of its biggest in recent years.
With the support of state subsidies, YMTC, China’s only participant in the global NAND memory industry, has rapidly expanded manufacturing capacity and R&D. The United States banned YMTC in 2022 because of concerns that the company might pass US technology to Huawei Technologies Co Ltd.
Changxin Xinqiao’s Big Fund capital raise is part of a wider registered capital expansion that included previous investors Changxin Xinan and Hefei Xinyi, who increased their capital contributions by 10.4 billion yuan and 14 billion yuan, respectively.
According to listings in the National Enterprise Credit Information Publicity System, Hefei Xinyi is supported by a handful of investment platforms related to the state asset regulator in Anhui province.
China established the Big Fund in 2014 to boost its semiconductor sector, which is said to lag behind that of the United States, Taiwan, and South Korea. For its first fund, the organization raised 138.7 billion yuan, and for its second fund, it raised 204 billion yuan.
According to Reuters, the Big Fund plans to raise another $40 billion in a new round as China accelerates its attempts to catch up with competitors.
However, the fund has also been entangled in a corruption issue, which resulted in an investigation against its previous director last year.
Semiconductors are employed in practically every aspect of modern technology. Mobile phones, laptop computers, gaming consoles, microwave ovens, and refrigerators all employ semiconductor components such as integrated chips, diodes, and transistors.