Chinese technology major, Lenovo, has announced that it will invest $500 million in a tech startup fund that will invest in some of the emerging sectors in consumer and enterprise technology, including artificial intelligence and cloud computing. This was announced by the company’s senior vice president, Mr. He Zhiqiang, at a press event in Beijing on Wednesday. According to reports coming out of China, the fund will be named Lenovo Capital, and will be funded and managed by the Lenovo Group, which itself is a subsidiary of a Beijing-based investment holding company called Legend Holdings Corporation. Like many other Chinese brands keen to get the first mover advantage in areas expected to grow exponentially over the next few years, Lenovo too has been investing large sums of money in mobile gaming companies, online security firms and smart home automation startups.
Lenovo is currently the world’s largest manufacturer of personal computers ahead of its American and Taiwanese competitors like Dell, HP and Asus. The company also happens to be one of the leading smartphone manufacturers in the world, although, it is yet to make the same sort of impact in the global smartphone market as it has been able to do in the world of personal computers, thanks in no small measure to the acquisition of IBM’s personal computing division in 2005. That acquisition allowed the company to market its notebook PCs under the American company’s famed ThinkPad brand, although, the company also markets its consumer-oriented IdeaPad laptop computers that come at a significant discount to the premium ThinkPad-branded devices. The company also manufactures and markets two distinct lines of desktop PCs under the ThinkCenter and IdeaCenter brands.
As for Lenovo’s smartphone business, the company manufactures and markets its Vibe lineup of smartphones, with the Vibe X3 being its current flagship. The Vibe series spans multiple segments and incorporates various niches like the Vibe P1 Turbo, which comes with a large, 5,000 mAh battery, the Vibe S1 that comes with dual selfie-cams and the camera-focussed Vibe Shot that sports a 16-megapixel primary camera with an f/2.2 aperture, Optical Image Stabilization and a triple-LED, dual-tone flash. The company also releases the K-series devices that straddle the entry level and mid-range segments, with the Vibe K5 Plus and the Vibe K4 Note currently doing roaring business in countries like China and India.