History of Sequoia Voting Systems,Inc

Edited by Bruce, V,黎明的光芒,烟波浩淼,EE.,
Proofreading and revised by V

Editor: Wenyun


This report aims to provide background information regarding the fraud-related entities, including Sequoia voting systems, Smartmatic, Dominion voting systems and Sequoia Capital China, and to reveal their complex relationship and connections.


Automatic Voting Machine Company or AVM

The Shoup Voting Machine Corporation was an American manufacturer of voting machines, founded in New Jersey in 1905 by Samuel R. Shoup. It changed names and locations over the years, before going out of business as Advanced Voting Solutions, Inc. of Frisco, Texas in 2015.

Sequoia Voting Systems

The company’s predecessor was a California-based company, and it was one of the largest suppliers of electronic voting systems in the U.S. In 1984, Sequoia Pacific Systems acquired the voting machine business of AVM and reorganized it as Sequoia Voting Systems, Inc. Under Sequoia’s ownership, the AVM was certified for use in several states in 1986 and 1987, with sleek new packaging, it went to public in 1990 as Sequoia AVC Advantage DRE voting machines.


On March 8, 2005, Sequoia was acquired by Smartmatic, a multi-national technology company which had developed advanced election systems, voting machines included. Since then, Smartmatic has dedicated much of its development and management team to modifying some of Sequoia’s older, traditional voting machines, and replacing their technology with avant-garde proprietary features and developments, which resulted in new, high-tech products.

Following this acquisition, U.S. Representative Carolyn B. Maloney requested an investigation to determine whether the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) had followed correct processes to green-light sale of Sequoia to Smartmatic, which was described as having “possible ties to the Venezuelan government” So, in November 2007, following a ruling by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), Smartmatic was ordered to sell Sequoia Voting Systems.

Dominion Voting Systems

The company was founded in 2002 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, by John Poulos and James Hoover. Dominion is the second largest seller of voting machines in the U.S. In 2016, its machines served 70 million voters in 1,600 jurisdictions. In 2019, the state of Georgia selected Dominion Voting Systems to provide its new statewide voting system beginning in 2020.

In June 2010, Dominion acquired Sequoia Voting Systems.

Neil Shen and Sequoia Capital China

Shen is a naturalized Singaporean entrepreneur, and is a member of Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference since 2018.

He is the Founding & Managing Partner of Sequoia Capital China. Before joining Sequoia, he was a well-known entrepreneur, co-founder of the travel site Ctrip.com (NASDAQ: CTRP) and Home Inns (NASDAQ: HMIN), and also worked as an investment banker at Deutsche Bank Hong Kong, Chemical Bank, Lehman Brothers, and Citibank.

Sequoia Capital China was established in 2005 as an affiliate to the U.S. firm under the leadership of Shen. Since 2005, Sequoia Capital China has invested over 200 Chinese companies, many of which are within the field of internet and listed in NASDAQ or HKEX, such as Alibaba, JD, PDD, and MEITUAN. The investment has been so successful and in such a large scale that Sequoia Capital China is said to have bought half of China’s internet industry.

*Details about his education and working experience, please refer to Article A below.

Their connections

AVM-> Sequoia -> Smartmatic-> Dominion

Acquisition of AVM by Sequoia Voting Systems

In 1984, Sequoia purchased the voting machine business of AVM Corporation and was reorganized as Sequoia Voting Systems. Under Sequoia ownership, the AVC was certified for use in several states in 1986 and 1987, and with sleek new packaging, it went to market as the Sequoia AVC Advantage DRE voting machine in 1990.

In late 1997, Sequoia obtained the intellectual property rights to the Optech line of ballot scanners from Business Records Corporation. This transfer was a consequence of antitrust action taken by the United States Department of Justice when American Information Systems merged with the Election Services Division of Business Records Corporation to form Election Systems & Software. After this merger ES&S retained the right to sell and service Optech scanners to existing customers; as a result, the ES&S Optech IV-C and the Sequoia Optech 400-C, for example, are essentially the same device.

Smartmatic acquired Sequoia Voting System in 2005

In early 2002 De La Rue, a British currency paper printing and security company took over ownership from its parent company, Ireland-based Jefferson Smurfit Group PLC for $23 million. After losing money for several years, on March 8, 2005, Sequoia was acquired by Smartmatic, a multi-national technology company which had developed advanced election systems, voting machines included.

On July 10, 2006, 18:01 (Monday), Political Counselor Robert Downes, wired a Confidential-class document from Caracas to over 13 US overseas embassies.

The document released by Wikileaks. From the wire, the public acknowledged that SEQUOIA, as a subsidiary of SMARTMATIC which owned probably by a strain of Venezuelan politico elites, working in a dozen U.S. states.

By the way, SMARTMATIC, is that the company is de facto Venezuelan and operated by Venezuelans. 

Smartmatic was ordered to sell Sequoia

After acquired Sequoia, Smartmatic assigned a major portion of its development and managerial teams, dedicated to revamping some of Sequoia’s old-fashioned, legacy voting machines, and replacing their technology with avant-garde proprietary features and developments, which resulted in new, high-tech products. As a result, Sequoia sold many new-generation election products and experienced a healthy financial resurrection during the fiscal years of 2006 and 2007. However, in November 2007, following a verdict by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), Smartmatic was ordered to sell Sequoia, which it did to its Sequoia managers having U.S. citizenship.

The company was contracted in 2004 for the automation of electoral processes in Venezuela. Since 2004, its election technology has been used in local and national elections in Africa, Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, Italy, Mexico, the Philippines, Singapore, the United Kingdom, the United States and Venezuela.

After the presidential recall referendum of 2004 in Venezuela, some controversy was raised about the use of electronic voting (SAES voting machines) in that country. Studies following the 2004 Venezuela recall elections found that Smartmatic’s network was “bi-directional” with data being able to be transferred both ways between Smartmatic devices and the telecommunications company CANTV, with alleged irregularities found between the Smartmatic and Venezuela’s National Electoral Council election results. The outcome could have been altered from about 60% against the sitting president, to 58% for the sitting president.

Smartmatic stated that the results of the 2017 Venezuelan Constituent Assembly election were manipulated. On August 2 of 2017, Smartmatic CEO Antonio Mugica stated on a press briefing in London “We know, without a doubt, that the result of the recent elections for a National Constituent Assembly were manipulated,” and added “We estimate that the difference between actual and announced participation by the authorities is at least one million votes.”  The company said that the turnout was off by at least one million votes. Reuters also reported that according to internal CNE documents leaked to the agency, only 3,720,465 votes were cast thirty minutes before polls were expected to close, though polls were open for an additional hour.[95] The company later left Venezuela in 2018.

The Wall Street Journal wrote that “Smartmatic scrapped a simple corporate structure” of being based in Boca Raton “for a far more complex arrangement” of being located in multiple locations following the Sequoia incident. Though Smartmatic has made differing statements saying that they were either American or Dutch based, the United States Department of State stated that its Venezuelan owners “remain hidden behind a web of holding companies in the Netherlands and Barbados”. The New York Times states that “the role of the young Venezuelan engineers who founded Smartmatic has become less visible” and that its organization is “an elaborate web of offshore companies and foreign trusts”, while BBC News states that though Smartmatic says the company was founded in the United States, “its roots are firmly anchored in (Venezuela)”. Multiple sources simply state that Smartmatic is a Venezuelan company. Smartmatic maintains that the holding companies in multiple countries are used for “tax efficiency“.

Dominion Voting Systems Acquired Sequoia in 2010

In May 2010, Dominion acquired Premier Election Solutions (formerly Diebold Election Systems) from Election Systems & Software (ES&S). ES&S had just acquired PES from Diebold and was required to sell off PES by the United States Department of Justice for anti-trust concerns. In June 2010, Dominion acquired Sequoia Voting Systems.

After the 2020 U.S. presidential election, Dominion either deleted or gave millions of votes that had been cast for President Trump to rival Joe Biden. Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal attorney, made several assertions about Dominion, including that his Dominion used software developed by rival Smartmatic, which he claimed was actually Dominion’s property, and that the software was developed by former Venezuelan socialist leader Hugo Chávez Biden. The company was founded by Giuliani. Giuliani asserts that the Dominion voting machines sent their voting data abroad to Smartmatic, an “anti-radical leftist” company with ties to antifa. Dennis Montgomery, a Dominion software designer, claimed to have used a government supercomputer program to change the ballots on the voting machines from Trump to Biden. Sidney Powell, a Trump attorney, claims that the Dominion voting system interfered in U.S. elections on a massive scale. “There’s a flood of evidence that proves that’s true.” Powell also claims she has a very strong witness who explains how it all works. His affidavit was attached to a brief filed by attorney Lynn Wood, who filed the lawsuit in Georgia.

Supplemental Article A: Detail Background of Neil Shen:

Neil Shen (沈南鹏)

Mr. SHEN Nanpeng (aka Neil Shen, Neil Nanpeng Shen)

  • Global Managing Partner of Sequoia Capital, Founder and Managing Partner of Sequoia Capital China, Founder of Ctrip and Home Inns.
  • Member of the 13th Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference National Committee.(CPPCC)
  • Vice-Chairman, China Securities Investment Fund Association, Venture Capital Fund Committee.
  • Co-founder and Chairman of the Hong Kong X Technology Startup Platform.
  • Member of the Advisory Panel on Innovation and Strategic Development for the Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China (HKSAR).
  • Trustee of Shanghai Jiao Tong University.


In 1985, Shen Nanpeng became a student in the first (class of ’85) exemption of examinations class of Shanghai Jiao Tong University.

In 1989, he graduated with a bachelor’s degree from Shanghai Jiao Tong University.

In 1989, he came to the United States to study, first in the Department of Mathematics at Columbia University, and then enrolled in the Yale Business School, where he received his master’s degree in 1992.

Overseas Experience

After graduating from Yale University in 1992, Mr. Shen joined Citibank in the United States.

In 1994, Mr. Shen returned to China and joined Lehman Brothers Asia, where he was responsible for the firm’s investment banking programs in the People’s Republic of China.

From 1996 to 1999, Mr. Shen was a Director and Head of China Capital Markets at Deutsche Bank, responsible for debt capital markets in China.

Domestic Ventures

In 1999, Shen Nanpeng founded Ctrip and served as Chairman of the Board, as well as President and CFO of the company.             

On December 9, 2003, he led Ctrip to go public on the NASDAQ.

In 2002, Mr. Shen founded the Home Inns chain of hotels and served as founder and co-chairman.

Disclaimer: This article only represents the author’s view. Gnews is not responsible for any legal risks.

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