E-commerce large JD.com, the closest rival to Alibaba in China, is broadening its presence in Silicon Valley after it introduced a collaboration with accelerator agency Plug and Play to hunt out and work with promising U.S. startups.
The e-commerce large mentioned it can share applied sciences, together with AI, cloud and good provide chain tech, with this system typically and work collectively to launch a brand new cohort that faucets into its intensive presence in China.
The brand new JD-backed program will likely be open to startups that cowl “a variety of areas and industries,” with a specific curiosity in those who function in widespread areas corresponding to robotics, AI, AR/VR and the cloud. Plug and Play will management the choice, with JD available to supply experience, mentorship, expertise and extra. There may also be alternatives to faucet into its community and promote merchandise on to Chinese language shoppers by way of its providers, which processed a complete of 658.2 billion RMB — or round $100 billion — in GMV throughout 2016.
JD listed on the Nasdaq in 2014 and at present its market cap at the moment stands at $53 billion. The corporate opened its first Silicon Valley workplace in 2015 which is concentrated on R&D. This 12 months, JD has elevated its funding focus exterior of China significantly, significantly in Southeast Asia the place it has backed Go-Jek, Pomelo and Traveloka, and additionally it is maintaining a tally of the early-stage scene within the U.S..
“JD believes that innovation shouldn’t solely profit new companies, but in addition assist conventional industries compete in at present’s atmosphere, and we sit up for figuring out and partnering with like-minded startups within the US. Partnering with Plug and Play, we hope to unlock the potential of the subsequent technology of firms, and assist them succeed each within the US and China,” JD’s chief technique workplace Dr. Jianwen Liao informed TechCrunch in an announcement.
The deal sees Plug and Play welcome its first companion from China. Earlier this 12 months the Sunnyvale-based firm introduced a significant growth to launch 9 new cohorts that cowl verticals together with fintech, meals and beverage, IOT and mobility. In contrast to its friends within the U.S., corresponding to Y Combinator, Plug and Play has expanded abroad and its international presence contains places as numerous as Brazil, Germany, Russia, Singapore, Spain and Canada.
“Partnering with JD.com, one in every of China’s premier expertise gamers, will give startups entry to each great innovation assets, in addition to an enormous serving to hand as they appear to succeed in the Chinese language market,” added Plug and Play CEO and founder Saeed Amidi.
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