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  • 03.23.17

The Silicon Valley startup that wants to help build Trump’s wall is backed by Beijing

A new Department of Defense white paper has some in Washington concerned that the U.S. government isn’t doing enough to back tech startups, and that China is rushing in to cover the deficit, according to the New York Times. That means the Chinese military, conceivably, could gain access to advanced U.S. technologies. 

One company that has taken investment from a state-backed investor is Quanergy, which last summer raised funds from the partly state-backed Chinese venture fund GP Capital. It’s also said to be the only Silicon Valley startup that has expressed interest in President Trump’s border wall, Dan Primack noted in his newsletter recently. Along with the spinning-laser sensors it makes for military driverless vehicles, Quanergy touts a security system billed as “the most complete and intelligent 3-D perimeter fencing and intrusion-detection system.” 

While the technology may be compelling, the relationship to Chy-na is likely to rumple Trump’s oversized suit. The Defense Dept. has sought to invest more money in startups, through entities like the Defense Innovation Unit Experimental. But if the government declines to partner with smaller innovative tech companies like Quanergy, China very well could. 

RR