Light Chaser Animation Secures $20 Million From GGV Capital.
China-based Light Chaser Animation Studios has recently announced having secured a total amount of $20 million during a Series B funding round, led by GGV Capital and Chengwei Capital.
Light Chaser was initially Launched during March 2013 by Gary Wang, founder of Tudou.com, which was purchased by rival Internet video company Youku.com during a $1 billion stock deal in 2012. Wang has stated that his ambition for the company it for its to be China’s answer to Pixar, a boutique studio “creating world-class animated fils with a Chinese culture touch.”
Light Chaser has spend the past 15 months accumulating technology and talent, it states that production for its first 3D animation feature, Little Door Spirits, will become finally completed by July 2015. Its budget has been said to be around $12 million.
Chinese Animation has always struggled from the lack of investment and the lack of creative talent, which has lead them to being completely outmaneuvered by both Western animated cartoons and Japanese animated series, but as of recently this sector has manage to go on a revival, with domestic animated features scoring high in the box office and a slate of high-quality projects in the pipeline.
These recent months have shown China launching a major initiative to boost animation, and the world’s second biggest film market is poised for a boom period concentrated on major project, such as the $40 million animated 3D project, Kong, co-produced by Gary Zhang and Korean filmmaker JJ Kim.
At the Cannes Film Festival’s market las month, the State Administatration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television (SAPPRFT) had designated China animation booth. Recent animation big hits have included the Pleasant Goat franchise and Boonie Bears: To the Resecue, a feature version of a hit show on the state broadcaster CCTV that took over $5.2 million on its opening day alone.
“The movie market in China is booming, and certainly there is a very significant growth space for Chinese animated feature films,” Jixun Foo, managing partner at GGV Capital, said in a statement. “We are impressed by the vision and execution capability of Light Chaser. Within a very short period of time, they have built up an excellent team and a world-class animation production pipeline. It’s very exciting that Light Chaser’s animation and CG capabilities are already at a level close to Hollywood.”
GGV is a venture capital firm based in Menlo Park, California and Shanghai, focused on expansion stage investments in the U.S. and Asia.. The company was an early backer of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba and has raised $2.2 billion of investor commitments across five funds to date.