Qualcomm’s $200 mn VC fund to invest in 5G start-ups

Qualcomm has created a $200 million venture capital fund to invest in start-up companies looking to use 5G technology in devices other than smartphones.
Apple vs QualcommQualcomm is supplying chips for 5G to phone makers such as Samsung Electronics. The San Diego company is the biggest supplier of chips for mobile phones, but that market has stopped growing.

Qualcomm said it is looking to invest in companies that will use 5G in other areas such as connecting industrial and agricultural equipment to the internet or enabling self-driving cars to communicate with infrastructure such as traffic lights and signs.

“5G will transform industries and should be viewed as a business strategy for all,” Steve Mollenkopf, Qualcomm’s chief executive, said in a release.

Qualcomm last year launched a similar $100 million fund targeted at startups making devices such as smart cameras that perform artificial intelligence tasks such as facial recognition. Qualcomm sells chips that provide that capability.

Qualcomm’s venture arm has previously invested in companies that later went public or were acquired, including teleconferencing company Zoom Video Communications, smartphone maker Xiaomi and self-driving car startup Cruise Automation.