Pitch Competition

Since its founding in 2015, Pitch Competition has served as a platform for founders and startups interested in the China market to showcase their ideas and raise funding. It has also allowed professional judges to hear the ideas of young innovators and discuss the future of investing with their peers. Over the past three years, the pitch competition has received over 200 business plans on average and selected eight teams to enter the final round each year.

In 2018, the three finalist teams received a total of $95,000 as cash prize. Out of the three, XtalPi, which provides accurate predictions on the physiochemical and pharmaceutical properties of small-molecule candidates for drug design using cloud computing and big data, has received 5 million dollars from Tencent and other investors in the Series Pre-A round funding. BrainCo, which was the winner of the 2015 pitch competition and focuses on brain technology, has received 5.4 million of investment.
             

The 22nd annual Harvard College China Forum will be held at the Harvard University from April 12 to 14, 2019. Harvard College China Forum Pitch Competition will take place on April 14th.

We look forward to reading your business proposals.

The top eight teams will be selected to pitch in the final round and present on stage at the 2019 Harvard College China Forum Pitch Competition for a $75,000 cash prize, provided by ZhenFund and GGV Capital. The first prize is $40,000, second prize $20,000, and third price $15,000. All team members presenting will receive a free pass to Sunday's programs. In addition to the cash prizes, judges and investors from the audience may choose to directly invest in the finalist teams. Last year, all eight finalists received funding by judges or other investors in the audience.

Sponsored by: ZhenFund GGV Capital
2 $20,000
1 $40,000
3 $15,000
         

The confirmed judges of this year include

(in alphabetical order)

ANNA FANG

Anna Fang is the CEO and Partner of ZhenFund, an angel investment fund active in China’s TMT sector. Anna oversees the fund’s investments, portfolio management and operations. Since starting the fund in 2011 with Xu Xiaoping, Anna has managed the fund’s over 300 early stage investments. She also sits on the Boards of many of ZhenFund’s investments. Before joining ZhenFund, Anna worked at GE China in Corporate Business Development, responsible for GE’s M&A and BD efforts in China. Anna started her career as an investment banker with J.P. Morgan in the New York office covering consumer and retail companies. Anna is an Advisory Board member of Columbia University’s East Asia Center and also serves on the Board of Visitors of Columbia College. Anna is also the co-head of Stanford Graduate School of Business’ Beijing Chapter. Anna received her undergraduate degree from Columbia University, and a Master of Business Administration from Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Partner and CEO, ZhenFund

SAMAN FARID

Saman is a passionate supporter of early-stage startups. He built startupsin the areas of e-commerce, IP television, and logistics management. After two exits, Saman decided to pursue his passion of helping entrepreneurs succeed by founding Comet Labs–a dedicated fund & incubator with the explicit goal of helping AI technology become widespread and productive. Saman invested in 48 companies through the fund, and helped incubate dozens of idea-stage companies and academic-breakthroughs. Saman previously and held positions at Honeywell, Verizon, Deloitte Consulting and Microsoft in roles ranging from R&D to operations optimization. He received his Bachelors degree in Control Systems Engineering from the Cooper Union and his MBA from Tsinghua and MIT. Looking for a more scalable way to help startups globally, Saman joined BV as a Partner leading the US team. He invests in AI companies in their early stages.

Partner and Head of the US team, Baidu Ventures

WEI JIANG

Wei Jiang is a venture partner at ZhenFund. His investment portfolio includes Leap.ai, Subtle Medical, Citcon, etc.Wei held leadership positions in a number of world class internet companies. Prior to ZhenFund, he was the Chief Marketing Officer at Google Greater China. Wei had founded startups in both US and China.Wei graduated from Peking University with a bachelor degree in Information Systems. He also holds an MBA from William E. Simon School of Business Administration, University of Rochester.

Investing Partner, ZhenFund

FENG LI

Feng focuses on E-commerce, deep technology, online education, new generation lifestyle businesses, and O2O enterprises. Previously as a partner at IDG-Accel, he led investments on a series of successful projects, including CreditEase, Zhubajie, Prosper, Three Squirrels, Tongbanjie, Didapinche, Bilibili, Coinbase, Changingedu, Dig Fortune, Helijia, Wangli Finance Group, Yodo Fortune, FraudMetrix, Liulishuo, Ripple Labs, Wecash, Jiang Xiaobai, Hstyle, baifendian, and bairong. Among them, CreditEase went public in 2015, and Zhubajie and Prosper successfully joined Billion Dollar Club. The return of investment for Three Squirrels, Tongbanjie, and Wangli Finance Group are now up to 50 times the seed investment stage. Feng led the establishment of IDG-Accel’s post-investment service system, providing help to early stage startups. Services include public relations, marketing, and human resources. He promoted topic investment strategy including Internet brand, Fintech, the 90s entrepreneurs project, C2C of O2O, and economy sharing approach. Feng obtained Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Peking University, and Master of Science in Chemistry from University of Rochester.

Founding Partner, FreeS Fund

XIAOJUN LI

Xiaojun Li is actively involved in investments in Mobile, Internet and Technology sectors. Xiaojun has extensive engineering, management and entrepreneurial experience in many different areas of technology. Prior to joining IDG Capital, he was a key member of the technology team at Broadcom Corp. (NASDAQ BRCM) and Marvell Semiconductor (NASDAQ: MRVL), where he led design teams for the development of several microchips. Previously, Xiaojun worked for Airvana Networks where he was responsible for the business development in Greater China.  Xiaojun received an MBA from the Wharton Business School at the University of Pennsylvania, a master’s degree in Electrical Engineering from UCLA and a bachelor’s degree in Engineering from the University of Science and Technology of China.

Partner, IDG Capital IDG

HANS TUNG

Hans Tung joined GGV Capital in 2013 as a managing partner to focus on consumer mobile internet, cross-border ecommerce, IoT, and mobile social communication investments in both China and the U.S. Hans led GGV’s investment and serves on the boards of Wish, a fast growing cross border mobile commerce marketplace; Xiaohongshu, a leading active social community and recommendation app for cross-border shopping in China; Poshmark, a simple and fun way to buy and sell fashion; GrubMarket, a marketplace for local farm goods; and OfferUp, a place for consumers to buy and sell goods locally.  He has invested in mobile social communication companies such as musical.ly, highly popular video social network for creating, sharing and discovering short videos; Slack, which brings all your communication together in one place;  Bustle, an online community providing a fresh spin on information and all subjects;  Wheelwell, a market network for automotive parts and services and Curse, a social communication platform for gamers that was acquired by Twitch. Hans is a personal investor in leading Indian e-commerce companies Flipkart and Snapdeal. He is also actively involved with GGV portfolio companies Airbnb, Flipboard, DraftKings, and Yodo1. Recently, he invested in Function of Beauty, a personalized beauty product provider. Hans was part of the Forbes Midas List four times in a row in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017 including No. 19 in the world in 2017.

Managing Partner, GGV Capital GGV

ANDREW YAN

Mr Andrew Y. Yan is the Founding Managing Partner of SAIF Partners, a leading multibillion dollar Venture Capital Fund in China. Mr. Yan is a Trustee of Peking University Endowment and a Director of its Investment Committee. He was voted by the China Venture Capital Association as “The Venture Investor of the Year” in both 2004 and 2007. He was also selected as one of the “Fifty Finest Private Equity Investors in the World” by the Private Equity International in 2007; “No. 1 Venture Capitalist of the Year” by Forbes (China) in 2008 and 2009. He was the “Venture Capital Professional of the Year” by Asia Venture Capital Journal in 2009.

Managing Partner, SAIF Partners

HAIFEI ZHANG

Haifei Zhang is the Founding Partner of Ab Initio Capital. He has broad entrepreneurship and venture capital experience, and focuses on middle-to-late stage investments in U.S.-China TMT, Consumer and Retail. He used to work at Morgan Stanley, and ZhenFund, and graduated from Harvard University with a PhD degree in Applied Physics. He used to serve as the President of The Harvard Chinese Students and Scholars Association.

Founding Partner, AB Initio Capital

QIN GANG

Qin Gang is mainly responsible for Lighthouse Capital’s investment operations in US. Their investment is mainly focused on smart hardware products and SaaS service software. Their leading investment projects include: the first FDA-approved OTC hearing aid iHear, Net Red series self-balancing unicycle electric skateboard Onewheel and 12Twenty.

Qin Gang is also versed with clean energy, hardware and SaasX systems. She served as an environmental consultant before joining Yuanzhan Capital.

Qin Gang holds a Ph.D. in Environmental Science and Engineering from UCLA and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from UCLA.

Partner, LightHouse Capital Management

Yusen Dai

Yusen is a partner of ZhenFund. He led investments of Xiaodaka, Chanjinglu, Ontology, Thunder, etc. Before joining ZhenFund, Yusen dropped out of Stanford in 2009 and cofounded Jumei(NYSE: JMEI). Jumei is the leading Chinese cosmetics e-commerce retailer and one of the largest Chinese e-commerce companies. Yusen oversaw Jumei’s product design and development, operation management, online marketing, and management of several categories. Yusen was one of the youngest cofounders to list their companies on NYSE. Yusen attended Stanford University Graduate School, and received his bachelor degree from Tsinghua University, Beijing.

Partner, ZhenFund

         

Hear from out past winners

Harvard China Pitch brings impact of international scale to startups. The team of XtalPi is grateful for this opportunity to showcase our work at Harvard College China Forum. We received comments and advice helpful for our future development from top-tier investors at the Harvard China Pitch. Immediately after the Forum, we also received investments from ZhenFund and FreeS Fund, which served as the judges in the pitch competition. The organizers of the Forum provided helpful assistance throughout the process, including the rehearsal before the pitch and the media coverage after the competition. They’ve also arranged recruitment opportunities for participants.              
             

Wen Shuhao

Founder and CEO, XtalPi

         

Past Winners

2015 Winners BrainCo

BrainCo, incubated in the Harvard Innovation Lab, develops brain-machine interface (BMI) technology products. BrainCo applies its expertise in machine learning, design, and neuroscience to create innovative brain-based applications in the education, fitness, and wellness spaces.

2016 Winners XtalPi

Focus on crystal of drugs based on super cloud computing and big data type high accuracy prediction technology, has won tencent’s $5 million investment institutions, such as the Pre – A round of investment.

2018 Winners YouSkin

YouSkin, created by a Harvard dermatologist and leading medical imaging expert, is revolutionizing how people take care of their skin. China’s skincare market is soon to become the largest in the world, and yet, over 50% of consumers express frustration with choosing the right product for their skin. With YouSkin, we offer clinical grade technology to measure the skin’s moisture level, pores, fine lines, luminosity, and spots in a standardized fashion to provide consumers with personalized skincare recommendations. Our algorithm uses big data and AI to provide the most up-to-date scientific findings and skincare knowledge, and evolves with consumers to account for changes in season, stress levels, and sleep patterns. Get ready to look good and feel great!

         

Meet Our Past Judges

BOB XU XIAOPING

Bob Xu is the founder of ZhenFund. He is known as one of China’s pioneering angel investors, with distinctions from Founder Magazine including “2011 Angel Investor of the Year,” “2012 Best Angel Fund in China,” and “2013 Best Angel investor in China.” Prior to founding ZhenFund, Xu was a Co-Founder of New Oriental Education & Technology Group, the largest provider of private education in China. In 2006, China Southern People’s Weekly voted Xu to be one of China’s “50 Most Charismatic People” and in 2004, Forbes Magazine listed Xu as one of China’s “Top 100 Celebrities.”

Founder, ZhenFund

PAN SHIYI

Pan Shiyi is Co-Founder and Chairman of SOHO China, one of Chinas largest prime office property developers. Born to a humble family in rural Gansu Province, Pan Shiyis rise to success has made him a celebrity role model for aspiring entrepreneurs, a social media pioneer in China, and a highly followed opinion leader with over 18 million fans on Weibo, the Chinese version of Twitter. Deeply committed to environmental causes, Pan Shiyi has been a leading voice raising public awareness for air pollution, leveraging his public profile to inform citizens about the dangers of PM 2.5 contaminants. He spearheaded efforts to develop Energy Saving and Air Purification systems for all SOHO China projects, challenging industry-peers to follow suit. Openly crediting his personal success to the opportunities made available to him through Chinas economic reform and growth, Mr. Pan is also an active philanthropist. He founded the SOHO China Foundation in 2005 with his wife Zhang Xin, and in 2014 launched the SOHO China Scholarships a US 100 million initiative to fund financial aid scholarships to Chinese students admitted to top international universities. Pan Shiyi and Zhang Xin are also members of the Breakthrough Energy Coalition, a group of global business leaders brought together by Bill Gates to invest in technologies that will transition the world to a zero emission energy future. Mr. Pan is currently a Senior Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School. His research interests are in the area of climate change and the environment. He is interested in best practices for corporations endeavoring to lower emissions and curtailing energy use with the ultimate aim of producing a source of solutions for Chinese companies and companies around the world.

Co-Founder and Chairman of SOHO China

XIAOCHUAN WANG

Xiaochuang Wang is the Sogou CEO, co-dean of the Tiangong Intelligent Computing Research Institute of Tsinghua University, Former senior vice president and CTO of Sohu.

Won the gold medal in the International Informatics Olympic Games at 18 years old, Became Sohus youngest vice president at 21 years old

More than 500 million people in China are using the Sogou input method he invented. Sogou search is the second largest search engine in China.

Sogou CEO

JANET TANG

Vice President of Corporate Strategy

HUGO SHONG

In 1993, Mr. Shong co-founded Chinas first technology venture capital firm, IDG Capital, backed by Patrick J. McGovern, Founder and Chairman of International Data Group (IDG). Till February 2017, IDG Capital has invested in over 500 Chinas most successful internet companies such as Tencent (QQ), Ctrip, Baidu, Sohu, Soufun, HomeInn, Hanting, Tudou, 91.com, Baofeng, Xiaomi, and Meitu. In January 2017, IDG Capital led the acquisition of IDG Ventures, the investment business under IDG. Mr. Shong completed the Harvard Business Schools Advanced Management Program in the fall of 1996. He conducted graduate studies at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy 1987-88 and earned his MS degree from Boston Universitys College of Communication in 1987. He studied Journalism at the Graduate School of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences from 1984 to 1986 and he received a B.A. degree from Hunan University in 1982. Mr. Shong has been a member of the Board of Trustees at Boston University since 2005, and the non-executive director of WPP plc since 2013.

Founding Partner, IDG Capital IDG

YU CHENG

Mr. Yu Cheng serves as a Partner at Morningside Venture Capital wherein he specializes in the mobile internet, artificial intelligence, sharing economy, and internet finance sectors. He has more than 11 years of venture capital experience.

Partner, Morningside Venture Capital

ZHANG LU

Lu Zhang is the Founding and Managing Partner of Fusion Fund(NewGen Capital). She was recently awarded the Forbes US 30 under 30 & Featured as the Honoree of VC category in US. Meanwhile, She was also awarded the Forbes Asia 30 under 30 investor. Prior to starting NewGen, she was a Venture Partner at Fenox Venture Capital. She participated in over 20 investments and assisted M&A of the portfolios. Lu was also the Founder and CEO of Acetone Inc. (acquired 2012), a start-up focused on non-invasive technology for the early diagnosis of Type II diabetes. She has also worked as a consultant at the United Nations Industrial Development Agency. Lu received her Master of Science in Materials Science and Engineering from Stanford University and holds several patents. She is an advisor and mentor to several innovation programs and incubators in Silicon Valley. Lu has won numerous awards and is frequently invited to speak at events.

Founding and Mananging Partner, Fusion Fund

DAVID TANG

Partner and Managing Director, NGP Capital