It was fascinating to see Tencent lead the $23m series D round for Academia.edu, a US-based platform for academics to share research papers.

This makes potential sense given the shift to Asia for intellectual property (IP).

After all Tencent and its main China-based internet peers, Baidu and Alibaba Group among others, filed more than 10,000 metaverse-related patents for tech like augmented reality, digital environment engines and headsets in the past year. H/T Tortoise.

China’s new Metaverse Industry Committee is a state-backed organisation that is overseeing these innovations and is expected to take a tough regulatory stance to deliver on the state’s goals.

More broadly, the Chinese occupied six of the top 10 owners of patent families, according to a recent data compilation by Bankless Times.

China’s Academy of Science (CAS) ranked second behind Samsung with more than 78,000 patents. Midea Group and Huawei Investment and Holding followed in the third and fourth spots. The former owns about 58,000 patents, the latter’s being nearly 48,000.

The study revealed that the number of patent grants in the US had dropped by about 7% in the past decade.

“His bread I eat, his song I sing” as Charlie Munger, investor at Berkshire Hathaway, has said.