Investment firm Sequoia Capital recently hired Beacon Global Strategies, a firm led by former intelligence officials behind the infamous Hunter Biden laptop letter, to advise it on how to operate in China as the venture capital giant spends millions funding the country’s technology sector, according to The Information.
Sequoia hired Beacon in 2022 for counsel on topics including the U.S. government’s stance on technology investments in China, as well as national security risks related to specific types of business transactions, according to people with knowledge of the situation who spoke to The Information. Beacon Global Strategies was founded and is run by Jeremy Bash, former Chief of Staff to the Director of the CIA and the Secretary of Defense, and boasts Michael Morell, former Deputy Director of the CIA, as a senior executive for roughly ten years.
Morell and Bash were two of the 51 former intelligence officials who signed an October 2020 letter casting doubt, without evidence, on the authenticity of files later verified by the Daily Caller News Foundation that were extracted from Hunter Biden’s laptop, alleging they were likely part of a Russian disinformation operation.
Moreover, Morell recently testified to the House Judiciary Committee that then-Biden senior adviser and current Secretary of State Tony Blinken reached out to him and “triggered” the creation of the letter. Morell said Bash, his Beacon colleague, put Morell in contact with Biden campaign chairman Steve Ricchetti, who thanked him for his role in the letter.
Biden later appointed Bash to the White House Intelligence Advisory Board in 2022.
Sequoia Capital is heavily invested in China’s technology sector; its affiliate, Sequoia China, raised $9 billion in 2022 to invest in China–based startups, including artificial intelligence companies seeking to be the Chinese version of OpenAI, the creator of the popular AI chatbot ChatGPT, according to The Information.
Sequoia Capital China invested in an AI startup by Yang Zhilin, who is considered one of China’s top AI researchers, according to The Information. Sequoia also backed another company Zhilin co-founded named Recurrent AI.
Zhilin worked at Google and Meta’s AI labs and published research with similarities to OpenAI and Google, according to The Information.
Sequoia is also a significant investor in ByteDance, TikTok’s Chinese parent company, according to TikTok CEO Shou Chew’s testimony to the House Energy and Commerce Committee in March.
Sequoia Capital and Beacon Global Strategies did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.
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