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Silicon bank opens city office
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Silicon Valley Bank yesterday opened its Shanghai representative office as part of a deal with the city's Yangpu District to beef up venture companies in China.

"The representative office is an important milestone in SVB Financial's China strategy," said Ken Wilcox, president and chief executive of SVB Financial Group.

It's a step forward for the company's commercial banking services in China, said Wilcox.

SVB Financial, the parent of Silicon Valley Bank, serves about half of the American venture-backed companies.

California-based SVB Financial serves emerging and mature companies in the technology, life science, private equity and premium wine industries.

The representative office is just part of the United States financial company's tie-up with the Yangpu District, which has lots of high-tech start-up companies and strong higher education and research and development industries.

The two parties, together with a local import and export company, have set up an 85.8-million-yuan (US$12.56 million) fund to invest in start-up companies. Yangpu's district government invested 60 million yuan, while SVB made a contribution of US$850,000 and Shanghai Zheng Zhang Import and Export Co paid the remainder.

Yangpu District has also hired SVB as fund managers for its 240-million-yuan fund to nurture small business.

"We're hoping that the tie-up with the SVB Financial can introduce matured market practices of the venture capital industry into the district," said Del Zhu, an official of Yangpu's finance bureau.

(Shanghai Daily September 2, 2009)

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