After two stages of speculation and gold grabbing, China’s AI four dragons have entered a new stage of competing for the first share of AI in China.
Now it seems that Yuncong Technology, which submitted its IPO application later than Kuangsi Technology and Itu Technology, has the best chance of winning. It has first passed the review of the Shanghai Stock Exchange, and has launched the final sprint to the capital market. If there is no accident, it will probably land on the science and technology innovation board around the National Day.
However, the name of China’s first AI share can’t hide the fact that Yuncong Technology is the bottom of the AI four dragons, and it also lies a big lie: the AI “national team” that the company has always advertised is just a shameful cover.
Who is the younger brother of the four AI dragons?
Making machines think and work like us has been human’s dream for many years. Jules Verne, a famous science fiction writer in modern France, predicted in 1877 that a large part of human intelligence would be replaced by robots in the future. Seventy years ago, the academic community began to study it.
In 1950, a senior student named Marvin Minsky and his classmate Dunn Edmund built the world’s first neural network computer, marking the beginning of the era of artificial intelligence. In the same year, Alan Turing, the father of computer, proposed Turing test. Six years later, computer expert John McCarthy officially invented the word “artificial intelligence” (AI), which was later regarded as the symbol of the birth of AI.
Due to the limitations of many conditions, the progress of artificial intelligence has been extremely slow for half a century, and it is even more a cold field in China’s industry. For quite a long time, entrepreneurs and capital prefer to pursue the Internet, which can generate quick returns by burning money. Only a decade ago did it quietly change.
In October 2011, Tang Wenbin, Yinqi and Yang Mu, three graduates of Tsinghua University, founded Beijing Kuangshi Technology Co., Ltd. In September of the next year, Itu Technology was launched in Shanghai. In 2014-2015, Shangtang Technology and Yuncong Technology were established successively. This is China’s four AI dragons or China’s four CV beasts (four computer vision unicorns) that have swept the capital market in the past few years. As of the end of August this year, the total financing scale of the four companies exceeded US $5 billion.
The lie of AI “national team”
As the latest company among the four AI dragons, the performance of Yuncong Technology is significantly inferior to that of Kuangshi Technology, Itu Technology and Shangtang Technology, but there is one thing that competitors do not have. On the official website, Cloud has labeled itself as “National Team of Artificial Intelligence”. In Zicai’s impression, this name is given by outsiders.
What’s more, it’s hard to say that the reason for Yuncong technology is sufficient: it was hatched from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, founder Zhou Xi was an expert introduced by the “Hundred Talents Program” of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and formed the Chinese Academy of Sciences face recognition research team; Yuncong Technology is the first AI enterprise that has undertaken to build three national platforms and participated in the formulation of national and industrial standards at the same time.
Generally speaking, the strength of capital ties can best reflect the intimacy between different entities. In the list of shareholders of listed companies of China Science Department, such as China Science Dawn, Guodun Quantum, Cambrian, etc., we can clearly see the presence of Beijing China Science Computing Resources Asset Management Co., Ltd. and Chinese Academy of Sciences Holding Co., Ltd. Cloud has not always been affiliated to the Chinese Academy of Sciences from the 57 shareholders of Science and Technology, in other words, the company has not received a penny from the industrial funds under the Chinese Academy of Sciences, only Nansha Financial Holding, Guoxin Capital, Shanghai Liansheng Guangdong Venture Capital and a small number of state-owned assets, Nansha Financial Holding, which holds the most shares, accounts for only 2.21%.
In terms of the most important patent index to measure the gold content of a technology company, Yuncong Technology is also embarrassed. Its invention patent application is significantly less than Shangtang Technology, Kuangsi Technology, Itu Technology, etc. As of June 30, 2021, Yuncong Technology has a total of 93 invention patents, which is difficult to assume the title of national team.
The era of AI four dragons is coming to an end
However, the packaging of the fake AI national team can provide a lot of unexpected benefits. In August 2019, after Kuangsi Technology failed to break into the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, in November 2020, Itu Technology submitted a prospectus to the Science and Technology Innovation Board. In this round of IPO wave, Yuncong Technology also followed the trend to initiate applications.
Two days before the acceptance of the technology prospectus, YTU Technology has received an inquiry letter from the Shanghai Stock Exchange. It is believed that Itu Technology is most likely to hit the first share of AI, but it has no choice but to make a fool of itself. At the critical time of the listing review, Itu Technology and the sponsor made a request to suspend the review, which directly raised the IPO process of Cloud Technology to the first place.
However, luck is the most unreliable thing. On September 9, Kuangsi Technology has also passed the listing review of the Science and Technology Innovation Board, and there is no doubt that Shangtang will land on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange before the end of the year. Their step by step pressure has made the first share of artificial intelligence of Yuncong Technology lose its due significance. The gap between several companies will soon widen, and the era of the AI four dragons will soon become history.