Intel Corp., the world's largest computer-chip maker, has formed a $500 million China fund to more than double investments in companies in the world's biggest semiconductor market.
Holdfast Online Technology Co. and Newauto Video Technology Inc. will be among the businesses targeted by Intel Capital's China Technology Fund II, the chipmaker said in a statement Tuesday in Beijing. The previous China fund spent $200 million in more than 28 companies, said the company, based in Santa Clara, Calif.
Intel employs 300 workers in Riverton and approximately 1,800 workers in its Lehi-based joint venture with Micron Technologies, IM Flash Technologies, which produces Nand flash memory.
Intel, whose processors power three-quarters of the world's personal computers, boosted spending in China as it seeks to gain a bigger share of the world's fastest-growing major economy. Chip sales in China will surpass $28 billion in 2011, driven by demand for computing and consumer electronics, according to February estimates at research firm IDC.
"We want to foster innovation and entrepreneurship in China," Arvind Sodhani, president of Intel Capital, said at a briefing in Beijing.
Sodhani said the fund, which should be used up in five to seven years, is the chipmaker's single largest in one country.
"That should give you a pretty good idea of the importance and size of commitment to China," he said, declining to say what returns the company's investments had made in the country.
Intel is building a $2.5 billion chip factory, its first in Asia, in the Chinese port city of Dalian. The Asia-Pacific region, including China, generated $5.3 billion, or 50 percent, of the company's sales in the fourth quarter.