US-based global investment firm Intel Capital is investing heavily in the Asia-Pacific smart device market, distributing US$28 million to several Chinese companies specializing in wearable devices, smartphones and Internet of Things (IoT) technology.
It marks the organization's first dip into its China Smart Device Innovation Fund, to which it committed US$100 million earlier this year, as it seeks to encourage innovation in the country.
Among the companies that received the first batch of investment are EyeSmart Technology, which specializes in iris recognition products and technology for mobile terminals; Shenzhen Fibocom Industrial Development, a provider of IoT and mobile internet communications and location-based services (LBS) solutions; and Guangdong Appscomm Digital Technology, which manufactures smart wearable devices and cloud applications in elder care, health management, and fashion and sports.
Intel Capital hopes that making the funds available to the Chinese firms will spawn a drive in technological advancements in the Asia-Pacific region.
"These innovative companies will help lead to a new wave of product development in China in smartphones, tablets, wearables and the Internet of things," said Arvind Sodhani, president of Intel Capital and executive vice president of Intel.
Intel Capital believes that smart technologies are set for "dynamic" growth in China, and expects the move to help promote Intel's chips in smart devices in the country.
The fund has been implemented alongside two other funds for the Chinese market: the US$200 million Technology Fund which was launched in 2005 and the US$500 million Technology Fund II, established in 2008.
The company has invested more than US$700 million in 120 Chinese companies since 1998.