Episode 16: Justin Kan of Twitch and Atrium: From Builder to Entrepreneur

GGV Capital’s Hans Tung and Zara Zhang interview serial entrepreneur Justin Kan. In 2007, he co-founded Justin.TV, a website that allowed anyone to broadcast video online. In 2011, Justin.tv spinned off its gaming division as Twitch, which went on to become the leading live streaming platform for video games in the US. Twitch was acquired by Amazon in 2014 for almost a billion dollars. More recently, Justin co-founded Atrium LTS—the “LTS” stands for “Legal Technology Services” – a startup that’s building technology to revolutionize the legal industry. GGV is an investor in Atrium.

Justin is a true startup veteran—in addition to starting multiple companies of his own, he has worked with hundreds of startups as a partner at Y Combinator, and has also personally angel invested in over 65 companies. Justin grew up in Seattle as a second-generation Chinese American, and graduated from Yale in 2005 with degrees in physics and philosophy.

In this episode, Justin recounted the story of how he started to live stream his life before streaming became cool, the pitfalls he has gone through during his startup journey, whether it was the right decision to sell Twitch to Amazon in 2014, and what gets him excited about his new venture Atrium.

Join our listeners’ community via WeChat/Slack at 996.ggvc.com/community. GGV Capital also produces a biweekly email newsletter in English, also called “996,” which has a roundup of the week’s most important happenings in tech in China. Subscribe at 996.ggvc.com.

The 996 Podcast is brought to you by GGV Capital, a multi-stage venture capital firm based in Silicon Valley, Shanghai, and Beijing. We have been partnering with leading technology entrepreneurs for the past 18 years from seed to pre-IPO. With $3.8 billion in capital under management across eight funds, GGV invests in globally minded entrepreneurs in consumer internet, e-commerce, frontier tech, and enterprise. GGV has invested in over 280 companies, with 30 companies valued at over $1 billion. Portfolio companies include Airbnb, Alibaba, Bytedance (Toutiao), Ctrip, Didi Chuxing, DOMO, Hashicorp, Hellobike, Houzz, Keep, Musical.ly, Slack, Square, Wish, Xiaohongshu, YY, and others. Find out more at ggvc.com.

Episode 15: Eric Yuan of Zoom: From Immigrant to Top CEO


GGV Capital’s Hans Tung and Zara Zhang interview Eric Yuan, founder and CEO of Zoom, the leading video conferencing solution for enterprise. Zoom is used by a third of Fortune 500 companies and 90% of the top 200 universities in the US. Eric was recently named the Top CEO on Glassdoor, with an approval rating of 99%, and was the first person of color to win the award.

Eric grew up and went to college in China, arrived in Silicon Valley in 1997 and joined WebEx when it was still a small company. In 2007 WebEx was acquired by Cisco and Eric became Cisco’s Corporate VP of engineering in charge of collaboration software. Eric spent 14 years in total at WebEx and grew its engineering team from 10 to 800, and increased its revenue from zero to over $800 million. Eric holds 11 patents, plus 20 pending patents in the pipeline.

In this episode, Eric shared his story of being rejected a US visa for 8 times while in China, how to overcome the “bamboo ceiling” as a Chinese engineer in Silicon Valley, and what makes Zoom different from its competitors.

Join our listeners’ community via WeChat/Slack at 996.ggvc.com/community. GGV Capital also produces a biweekly email newsletter in English, also called “996,” which has a roundup of the week’s most important happenings in tech in China. Subscribe at 996.ggvc.com.

Espisode 14: Jenny Lee of GGV Capital on Being a VC in China

Hans Tung and Zara Zhang interview Jenny Lee, a managing partner at GGV Capital based in Shanghai. Jenny joined GGV in 2005 and was instrumental in setting up GGV’s presence in China. Forbes recently ranked Jenny as the world’s 16th most powerful women in tech.

A self-professed geek who loves new technologies and products, Jenny has been involved with consumer Internet, SaaS, and frontier technology companies at GGV, and has helped many go public. Since 2011, Jenny has been recognized by the Forbes Global 100 VC Midas List of top venture capitalists, ranking as the #1 woman and #10 overall in 2015.

Jenny grew up in Singapore and was educated in the US, where she attended Cornell and Northwestern University. In this episode, we discussed how Jenny rose from a newcomer to one of the most respected VCs in China, how she set up the China presence of a US venture capital firm, how venture deals are done in China, and how US companies can better align themselves with Chinese government’s interests.

Episode 13: Yasheng Huang of MIT on the Future of US-China Trade Relations

In the first joint live session of GGV Capital’s 996 Podcast and The Sinica Podcast, we interviewed Yasheng Huang, a renowned economist and Professor of Global Economics and Management at the MIT Sloan School of Management. GGV Capital’s Hang Tung and Zara Zhang were joined by Kaiser Kuo, host of the Sinica Podcast and producer of the 996 Podcast.

Huang founded and runs the China Lab and the India Lab, which aim to help entrepreneurs in those countries improve their management skills. He is an expert source on international business, political economy, and international management. In collaboration with other scholars, Huang is conducting research on human capital formation in China and India, entrepreneurship, and ethnic and labor-intensive foreign direct investment.

In this episode, we discussed the recent trade tensions between the US and China, how are geopolitical factors affecting the global tech industry, and how China’s growth story compares to that of India and other developing countries.

Episode 12: Yinglian Xie & Fang Yu of DataVisor: Fighting Frauds with Machine Learning

GGV Capital’s Hans Tung and Zara Zhang interview Yinglian Xie and Fang Yu, the co-founders of DataVisor, a fast-growing startup in Silicon Valley that provides big data security analytics for consumer-facing websites and apps. Its customers include some of the largest companies in the world, such as Alibaba, Dianping, Pinterest, Yelp, Bytedance (a.k.a. Toutiao), among others.

Both Yinglian and Fang have decades of experience in Internet security, specifically on fighting large-scale attacks to online services, such as fraudulent online payments, spamming, user hijacking, search-result poisoning, etc. They were both senior researchers at Microsoft for many years before starting DataVisor in 2013, and have filed over 20 patents.

Yinglian received her Ph.D. in Computer Science from CMU and a Bachelor’s degree from Peking University. Fang holds a Ph.D. in computer science from Berkeley and a Bachelor’s degree from Fudan University.

Episode 11: Bertrand Schmitt on Starting App Annie in China

GGV Capital’s Hans Tung and Zara Zhang interview Bertrand Schmitt, the CEO and co-founder of App Annie, the leading global provider of app market data. Bertrand started App Annie in Beijing in 2011 and has since then grown it into a truly global company, with 450 employees across 13 countries today. App Annie is now used by industry leaders all over the world. Customers include Google, Snapchat, The New York Times, as well as Chinese companies like Tencent, Bytedance, and Xiaomi.

In this episode, we discuss why Bertrand, a native of France, chose to move to China despite the language and cultural barriers, how a non-Chinese entrepreneur can become successful in China, and why having a multi-cultural DNA can be the best asset for startup teams today.

Episode 10: Nathan Blecharczyk on Lessons from Airbnb’s China Expansion

On the first live show of 996 Podcast, GGV Capital’s Hans Tung and Zara Zhang interviewed Nathan Blecharczyk, Airbnb’s co-founder, Chief Strategy Officer, and Chairman of Airbnb China. In front of 150 audience members gathered at Airbnb’s San Francisco headquarters, Nathan discussed Airbnb’s China strategy, how it has evolved over the years, and what lessons he has learned through working with China. He also explained how to build relationships in China, how the company thinks about local competitors, and why Chinese authorities might actually be more open-minded than those elsewhere.

GGV Capital is an investor in Airbnb, and Managing Partner Hans Tung and Glenn Solomon have been advising the company’s China strategy.

Episode 9: Brad Bao of LimeBike on Tackling America’s Last-mile Problem


GGV Capital’s Hans Tung and Zara Zhang interview Brad Bao, the co-founder and chairman of LimeBike, a fast-growing dockless bike sharing company in the US based in San Mateo, California. Founded in January 2017, LimeBike is currently in more than 50 different markets in the US, and have helped users with more than 2 million trips since it launched. Before founding LimeBike, Brad was an investor at Fosun Kinzon Capital, and previously helped launch and build up Tencent’s US operations as Tencent’s first employee outside of China. LimeBike is an example of a phenomenon known as “copy from China”—importing innovative business models from China into the US.

In this episode, we discuss Brad’s “pivot” from an investor searching for a bike-sharing deal to the founder of a bike-sharing company, why bike-sharing can work in the US, and why being cross-border is a crucial advantage in this space.

Episode 8: Miranda Qu of Xiaohongshu on Powering E-Commerce with Community

Miranda Qu is the co-founder of Xiaohongshu (“Little Red Book” in Chinese), the world’s the largest lifestyle platform that integrates community and content with e-commerce. Over 75 million users spend a total of over RMB 100 million per month on the app to buy fashion, cosmetics, and lifestyle products from both overseas and domestic brands. Xiaohongshu is a pioneer in integrating content, commerce, and community – the “3 Cs” that GGV managing partner Hans Tung thinks today’s e-commerce platforms must possess in order to stand out in “the age of Alibaba and Amazon.”

Miranda graduated from Beijing Foreign Studies University with a degree in journalism, and left her job in 2013 to start Xiaohongshu. In this episode, Miranda discusses how she met her cofounder Charlwin Mao in a shopping mall in Boston, Xiaohongshu’s journey from a “Lonely Planet for overseas shopping” to one of China’s most popular e-commerce platforms, and why young Chinese consumers increasingly prefer domestic brands over foreign ones.

Episode 7: Yi Wang of Liulishuo on Teaching English with AI

Yi Wang is founder and CEO of Liulishuo (a.k.a. LingoChamp), China’s leading mobile learning platform for spoken English with over 70 million users. It uses speech recognition technology to enhance the learning experience and provide learners with measurable and proven results. Within a few months of launch, Liulishuo rose to the top of the Apple app store in China, and was recently ranked by CB Insights as one of the 100 most promising artificial intelligence startups in the world in 2018.

Yi is a “sea turtle” (海归, overseas returnee) who returned to China after studying and working in the US. He received his Ph.D in computer science from Princeton University in 2009 and MSE and BE in electronic engineering from Tsinghua University. Before founding Liulishuo in 2012, Yi was a product manager at Google’s headquarters in Mountain View from 2009 to 2011. Yi has also worked as a product director at AdChina, responsible for its performance ads platform.

In this episode, we discuss questions like: Why did Yi choose to leave his comfortable job in Silicon Valley to start a new venture in China? What challenges must “sea turtles” overcome to successfully start a company in China? What makes Liulishuo so engaging to its millions of users? Will AI ever replace human teachers?