While the country is leading a global contraction in VC investment, its auto sector has taken the top spot for funding so far this year, with more than 147 deals amounting to $5.95 billion, according to data from research firm Preqin. Much of that has been from capital flowing into EVs, with batteries and semiconductors—two other high-growth sectors in the new-energy vehicle chain—in fourth and fifth place. All three have logged more deals than last year, while fundraising for once-hot industries like internet businesses, education and real estate have fallen off a cliff, reports Caixin.
The biggest deals this year include Changjiang Capital’s $1.57 billion bet on a high-end electric car startup founded by Renault China CEO Soh Weiming, and a $1.17 billion Series A round for Sunwoda’s EV battery unit, driven by investors including Shenzhen Capital Group and National Green Development Fund Management, according to Preqin.
“Pretty much the only market that’s doing extremely well is the EV market,” said Jochen Siebert, managing director at JSC Automotive. “For now it’s the last game in town you can play.”