Big Data, Big Money: Dameng Closes Series A Led by Harvest Capital
Receiving hundreds of millions of yuan, the Wuhan-based database startup intends to expand its global presence.
Dameng Database (达梦数据库) has closed its Series A, nabbing at least CNY 100 million (USD 14.2 million) from a handful of locally renowned entities, including Harvest Capital (丰年资本). The latter has recently pumped a significant amount of money into advanced materials producer Jiahong (佳宏). This is the first round of independent investment in Dameng's two-decade-long history.
The company was founded in 2000 as a subsidiary of China Electronics Corporation (CEC, 中国电子信息产业集团). Specializing in data management system development, Dameng has, since then, boosted its scope to cover over 30 industries such as public security, energy, auditing, communication and finance. It claims to have been independently developing various database software products for roughly 40 years, reaching 7 million lines of code – a pretty 'geeky' metric that shows how seriously the company treats its core focus.
With R&D centers in Wuhan, Shanghai and Chengdu and branches in Beijing, Guangzhou and several other cities, the firm has also been exploring market opportunities abroad: its clients are scattered around the world, with Bulgaria, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Nigeria, Russia, South Korea, Thailand and the United States on the list.
California-based late-stage venture Aerospike, which provides hybrid memory database solutions for real-time big data applications, and DataStax – a database management startup that obtained over USD 100 million from Kleiner Perkins in a Series E carried out in 2014 – might be considered Dameng’s overseas counterparts – or even role models.
Institutional money managers have recently been putting billions of dollars on the line by investing heavily in multiple companies in China's 2B sphere. For one thing, Internet Data Center (IDC) upstart Tenglong (腾龙数据) broke the industry record, raising an astonishing CNY 26 billion (nearly USD 3.7 billion) from Morgan Stanley, Nanshan Capital (南山资本) and several other investors a few days ago.
A growing number of exits in the cloud and corporate software sectors is another bright spot for the country's private equity market, which has recently been cooling down, with many venture capitalists reluctant to throw financial resources at nascent local projects. This fall, EqualOcean reported on a number of fresh public offerings that happened on China's newest Nasdaq-style trading board (read more about the venue in EqualOcean report – download).
Kingsoft Office (金山办公, A17055:SH), a Xiaomi-backed software package developer with over 300 million Monthly Active Users (MAU), reportedly raised over CNY 4.5 billion (USD 639 million) in its Shanghai IPO. Hong Kong-listed cloud computing supermarket UCloud (优刻得, A19019:SH) is also about to peep into China's Mainland's largest bourse – it received a nod from the market watchdog in late September. These were followed by at least a dozen code-writing startups that are queueing for a listing on the Star Market this year, most of them are profitable, with solid financial results.