China's well-known venture capitalist Liu Qin has made a lot of bets, but from the perspective of investment returns, there may not be a comparable investment in Xiaomi, which is expected to conduct an IPO (initial public offering) this year.
Liu Qin is a co-founder of Morningside Capital, the earliest supporter of Xiaomi, and is now its largest institutional investor. According to informed sources, Morningstar Capital will be one of the biggest beneficiaries of Xiaomi's IPO based on the large amount of shares held by the company.
In 2014, after Xiaomi provided financing with a valuation of US$46 billion, Liu Qin’s original investment in Xiaomi had already received a return of about 40 times. This time, analysts expect Xiaomi’s IPO valuation to reach approximately US$100 billion. As for how much Morningside Capital can get, Liu Qin declined to comment.
Last week, when interviewed by Silicon Valley media in Hong Kong, Liu Qin stated: "Based on our influence and return on investment, Xiaomi is the most successful investment in my career. ”
Liu Qin is one of the most successful venture investors in China, investing in at least four start-up companies with valuations of more than US$1 billion, making him one of China’s top “unicorn headhunters”. In addition, Liu Qin also successfully withdrew investment in several companies.
Liu Qin’s investment in unicorn companies includes pig short-term rentals, social video application quick hands, tech (seconds) and Tencent-funded micromedicine, and other companies that are likely to become unicorns (worth more than US$1 billion) include Workplace social platforms, online financial app snowball and used car market.
In addition, Liu Qin also invested in Sohu.com, Ctrip.com and Happy Age (YY), all of which have been listed on NASDAQ.
The millet IPO may become a turning point: it marks the end of the era of “small investment returns”. Liu Qin said that in the future these companies will need larger investments because the tech industry is becoming more and more like real estate, healthcare or transportation, and needs a greater amount of capital injection.
He said: "10 years ago, capital was relatively scarce and the number of entrepreneurs was also small. When a startup company's capital operating efficiency is high, and there are many innovations, we're the ones who have gone to Bao & rsquo;. ”
Liu Qin tries to avoid investing in capital-intensive start-up companies such as trips. For Didi Chuxing, Liu Qin mistakenly believes that investors will not invest such a large amount of money in companies like Dripping or Uber. He said: "The first time I saw a private company can raise 10 billion US dollars. ”
Liu Qin became the earliest investor of Xiaomi, originating from a conversation with Xiaomi’s chairman Lei Jun in one night in 2010. At that time, Lei Jun persuaded Liu Qin and let Liu Qin believe that with his experience in online retail and software development, he could create a new smartphone manufacturer.
Liu Qin recalled that the conversation between the two began at 9 pm and ended at 9:00 am the next morning. In the end, Lei Jun persuaded Liu Qin. Liu Qin said: "His thought inspired my inspiration. ”
Liu Qin and Lei Jun met in 2003, when Lei Jun was still working at Kingsoft. Later, the relationship between the two gradually deepened, and Liu Qin even regards Lei Jun as "a half teacher and a half".
When Liu Qin established Morningside Capital, Lei Jun became an angel investor. As a result, the two invest together from time to time. In 2010, inspired by the success of the iPhone, Lei Jun called Liu Qin, explaining the idea of establishing a new mobile phone company. After the call ended, Liu Qin decided to invest.
He said: "We trust each other. When he wants to set up a company, he wants to talk to me. He really didn't call for money, but he wanted to verify his ideas with someone he trusted. ”
Liu Qin also said that although some of his previous investments have been successful, he believes that he can still do better and win more. He said: "What is success? You must have a vision, not just see how much money you make. ”
Of course, Liu Qin also missed some good investments, such as trips and today’s headlines. He said: "My job is to constantly regret it. Sometimes your experience is your inertia. ”