The Trump administration has put Hunter Biden’s business dealings in its crosshairs.
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One of the 27 Chinese companies the Commerce Department added to its so-called entity list of firms barred from doing business with the U.S. is Megvii Technology, a business in which BHR, the cross-border investment arm of China’s Bohai Industrial Investment Fund, owns a stake in. *Hunter Biden owns a 10 percent stake in BHR, but is not a limited partner in the funds that own Medvii.
Biden and his father, Vice President Joe Biden -- who's seeking the Democratic Party's nomination to run against Trump -- have come under scrutiny over the younger man's business dealings in Ukraine. House Democrats are conducting an impeachment inquiry into a whistleblower's claim that the president asked the Ukrainian government to investigate Hunter Biden's work there in the hopes of generating ammunition for his 2020 reelection campaign.
Trump responded to the move by saying he has a responsibility as president to address potential corruption, whether it involves the Bidens or anyone else.
Biden attorney George Mesires did not immediately respond to FOX Business’ request for comment. Megvii, the firm in which BHR Investment Fund VI invested, designs image recognition and deep-learning software. The company said in a statement that it "strongly objects to the company’s designation on the U.S. Commerce Department’s Entity List, for which there are no grounds."
The U.S. government "cannot and will not tolerate the brutal suppression of ethnic minorities within China,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “This action will ensure that our technologies, fostered in an environment of individual liberty and free enterprise, are not used to repress defenseless minority populations.”
Megvii, which is backed by Chinese tech giant Alibaba, filed in August for an initial public offering in Hong Kong. It’s seeking to raise up to $1 billion in the stock sale, which is expected to occur before the end of the year. It is unclear if Monday’s actions will alter the company’s plans.
Earlier this year, Megvii raised $750 million in a funding round, giving it a valuation of more than $4 billion, according to Reuters. Megvii lost 5.2 billion yuan ($730 million) in the first six months of this year, more than in all of 2018.
*This article was corrected to show that Hunter Biden does not individually own a stake in Megvii Technology, only BHR Partners does.