Under the new economic wave, science and technology finance is showing five major trends
Editor's note In recent years, China has achieved rapid development in the field of technology finance. With the intensive implementation of science and technology financial innovation support policies from the central government to local governments at all levels, the vitality of domestic science and technology financial innovation continues to increase. As an important part of China's science and technology financial system, the Science and Technology Innovation Board has had a lot of bright spots in the past year. In the process of focusing on high-tech industries and strategic emerging industries, it has become an important force to help the new economy grow. To this end, this newspaper has organized a series of articles to explore related issues with a view to inspiring further discussion and thinking.
With the continuous advancement of a new round of scientific and technological revolution and industrial transformation, the new economy is booming in many parts of the world. Numerous high-growth technology innovation companies, platform companies, cutting-edge technology startups, and other market players with new economic characteristics have emerged rapidly, exploded, and iterated and updated, which has become a new driving force for global economic development. Among them, there are both the driving force of the "father of science and technology" and the success of the "mother of finance". In recent years, China has achieved rapid development in the field of science and technology finance, which has become an important force for the growth and growth of the new economy.
Compared with traditional finance with banking and insurance as the core in the industrial economy era, technology finance serving the new economy is a new technology, new model, new organization, and new format that adapts to fission development. The mechanism and other aspects have distinct genes. If all kinds of technological innovation enterprises, new industries, and new business forms are new economic species emerging in the real economy, then technology finance is a new economic species in the financial field. In recent years, with the in-depth advancement of relevant reform measures by the government to promote the integration of technology and finance, science and technology finance has entered a new stage of high-quality development and has shown five major trends.
Service objects and investment objectives are becoming more and more diverse
On the one hand, it is the differentiation of the technology enterprise group. Most of the new economic enterprises that have continuously emerged under the wave of dual innovation follow a non-linear growth route, and the enterprise groups at different stages of growth reflect their distinctive characteristics of financing needs, thereby bringing about the diversification of technology financial services. For example, the formation of the "Gazelle Enterprise" group has accelerated throughout the country, and has become the focus of science and technology financial services in various regions and a high-quality reserve army for the listing of enterprises. According to statistics from the Ministry of Science and Technology, the number of "Gazelle Enterprises" in China's National High-tech Zones has reached nearly 3,000, an increase of 57% in 5 years (from 1,888 in 2014 to 2,968 in 2018), and the number of listings and listings from Two in 2009 increased to 546 in 2018 (105 listed and 441 listed on the New Third Board). As another example, unlisted technology leaders with a valuation of more than US $ 1 billion within 10 years of establishment (hereinafter referred to as “technological leaders” refer specifically to such enterprises) have become the most popular new species in the capital market in recent years. Value and financing are far ahead of other types of technology companies.
On the other hand is the diversification of investment objectives. With the increasing maturity of the venture capital industry, the goal of professional venture capital has expanded from the initial corporate business to entrepreneurial teams and projects, and further developed into bundled investment with incubators, industrial chain investment, and joint investment. Nowadays, investment in technology routes and new tracks has become the new logic of investment institutions. Equity investment has become more and more industrial in nature and has increasingly become one of the main forces that foster the development of emerging industries. According to incomplete statistics, big data, new entertainment, smart logistics, new energy vehicles, medical health, artificial intelligence, digital real estate, new retail, and travel services are the new venture capital of China's leading science and technology companies reaching more than 1 billion US dollars in 2019. In the nine major areas, total financing accounted for more than 80%.
"Patient capital" for cutting-edge technology is becoming a trend
With the upgrade of dual innovation, the “new R & D” boom of new R & D institutions and hard technology entrepreneurship has been launched nationwide in the past two years, and long-term venture capital that focuses on ultra-early technology entrepreneurs has also begun to appear in China, helping the frontier technology The results were supported by market funds during the laboratory phase, thereby accelerating commercialization. With the gradual improvement of the Chinese government's science and technology financial service system, a group of "patient capital" represented by the scientific and technological achievements transformation fund and the policy venture capital parent fund have emerged, breaking through the professional market-oriented venture capital fund for technology startup projects. The “three to five year” investment cycle restrictions have greatly improved the continuity of capital support for early research and development projects. For example, as a patient scientific and technological achievements transformation fund, Beijing Kechuang Mother Fund aims to guide professional market management institutions to empower high-tech entrepreneurial projects, invest in the original innovation stage, and help companies get out of the valley of death.
Continuous diversification of products and services
Since the new economy is always undergoing rapid fission and iterative updates, the high risk and high variability of emerging industries may cause traditional financial markets to fail. However, the technology financial service system rooted in the new economy also follows new economic innovation rules such as cross-border integration, ecologicalization, and platformization, and can provide personalized solutions for various types of technology companies.
In recent years, with the in-depth advancement of various reforms around science and technology finance, traditional financial institutions and investment institutions have strengthened their own product and service innovation, organizational innovation, and mechanism innovation. The specialized financial products and services provided by enterprises and emerging industries are increasingly diversified. For example, China started to explore and implement the pilot investment business of “technical investment and loan linkage” for SMEs in 2016, which fully reflects the cross-border innovation characteristics of the new economy, prompting commercial banks and PE and other investment institutions to reach strategic cooperation. Commercial banks are at risk Based on the evaluation of investment institutions and equity investment, the company invests in enterprises in the mode of "equity + creditor's rights", forming a synergy between equity capital and bank creditor's capital. As another example, many local governments in China have set up a risk compensation fund pool for technology finance. Through the "risk compensation fund pool", they provide policy guarantees for technology-based SMEs to apply for credit loans and seek equity financing. At the same time, the financing interest rate can also be controlled, which greatly reduces the financing cost of corporate credit loans.
Increasing scale of technology investment
After the double innovation, with the continuous emergence of continuous entrepreneurs, platform-enabled entrepreneurs, etc., a group of technology companies that can obtain large financing of more than 100 million yuan at the initial stage of the establishment gradually formed, which was very rare 10 years ago. of. According to relevant data, a total of 105 such companies raised an average of 310 million yuan from 2017 to 2019, with a maximum of 10 billion yuan. Among them, 74 completed the A round of financing, with a total financing of 20.82 billion yuan, with an average financing amount of 380 million yuan; 6 completed the Pre-A round of financing, with a total financing of 710 million yuan; 25 completed the angel round of financing, with a total financing of 42 100 million yuan, with an average financing of 170 million yuan. At the same time, the gold-absorbing capacity of technology-leading enterprise groups with a valuation of more than US $ 1 billion within 10 years of establishment is also expanding. Taking Beijing as an example, the number of such companies in 2016, 2017, and 2018 were 65, 70, and 82, respectively, with a total valuation of US $ 213.7 billion, US $ 276.4 billion, and US $ 335.45 billion. The value has been increasing for 3 consecutive years. The continuous increase in the ability of technology-leading enterprises to absorb gold fully proves the continuous expansion of China's technology equity investment scale.
New track becomes a new investment outlet
In the new economic era, the race track has become the origin of the outbreak of emerging industries. With the rapid development of new technologies represented by the Internet, big data, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, etc., a large number of new tracks with cutting-edge, sense of technology, experience and creativity have emerged. Investment institutions describe "what and how to vote" as a track. The so-called "betting track" is to make a forward-looking judgment on the industry trends first, and then choose the most promising and investment opportunities to do investment layout, rather than simply looking for companies.
It can be said that the track is a new business format that has the attention of investment institutions, has cross-border properties, has explosive growth potential, and has massive market prospects. At present, some local governments have proposed to seize the new economic track. Through the flexible use of government funds such as scientific and technological achievements conversion funds, policy risk investment funds, and other government funds to guide social capital to invest in the track, to help new economic enterprises in the new track Rapidly expand application channels, increase market size, and achieve scale growth of 100 billion or even trillion.
In the new era, global economic development will surely accelerate towards the new economic model, and the five major trends in technology finance will become more prominent. In this context, in order to stabilize economic operation and seize new growth points, it is necessary to give full play to the nurturing role of science and technology finance in new economic enterprises, use financial capital leverage to accelerate the realization of the value of new technologies and new models, and promote more new economies The enterprise develops healthily and empowers the transformation and development of traditional industries. As a new economic species in the financial field, science and technology finance, like new economic enterprises and emerging industries, needs a suitable and relaxed development environment. Therefore, it also needs to call for financial innovation breakthroughs and deep reform of the financial system.
(Wang Delu Yue Bo Wang Delu is the director of Beijing Great Wall Enterprise Strategy Research Institute, Yue Bo is a senior researcher of Beijing Great Wall Enterprise Strategy Research Institute)