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Tech offers great potential

By Cai Xiao | China Daily | Updated: 2016-12-21 08:03

Liu Erhai, founder and managing partner of Joy Capital, talked to China Daily about the investment opportunities for China's technology industry in 2017. Following are edited excerpts from the interview.

What will be the greatest opportunity in the technology industry in 2017?

In 2017, robotics, AR/VR, autonomous cars, electric vehicles and big data will continue to be hot topics as they were in 2016. However, AI remains the biggest opportunity. AI will permeate almost every fields of industry. Autonomous cars and robotics are both examples of AI's applications. Besides its development as technology, the breakthrough for AI will depend on whether it could be a proper application scene and this will have greater meaning.

What kind of technology company will have the greatest potential?

There will be more investment opportunities in the virtual personal assistant and domestic robot fields. People in modern society are quite busy and stressed. Different kinds of domestic robots will play more important roles in people's daily lives, such as security guards and personal assistants. These are not only consumer products, but also service providers. Besides computers, there will be new types of high intelligence products and services provided at home.

What do you think of the exit of venture capital and private equity investment from the technology industry?

IPOs in China's A-share market have become relatively smooth. During the past few months, more IPOs have been approved. We could have optimistic forecast for the next year.

There has been no news about a board for strategic emerging industries. No one has mentioned the registration system thus far. There might not be much progress in this area in 2017 either.

There seems no hope to resolve the issue of fluidity of the NEEQ. With respect to the transfer of stock exchanges, there may be attempts but not substantial progress.

Recently, the US stock market has been highly active. New IPOs of China companies in this market do not appear active as in the past. Due to regulatory issues, some fintech companies are likely to go public in the US share market.

Could you forecast the merger and acquisition conditions in the technology industry next year?

M&As in the technology field remain active, which will focus on core technology, such as deep-learning, autonomous cars, VR/AR, and robots. Furthermore, more deals and big deals will appear along with startups becoming large-scale internet companies.

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