Japan’s KDDI Corporation recently announced a new investment fund worth 5 billion yen (or about $66 million), which will target upcoming startup companies in Japan, Asia, and the US, primarily in the mobile space.
The fund will be managed by Japanese venture capital firm Global Brain, which has worked with domestic ISP and portal site Nifty, developing opportunities and partnerships for its portfolio ventures. The firm tells PO that it sees Singapore as a natural center for future activity around Asia, and in fact, it has already partnered with NUS Entrepreneurship Center. A Global Brain representative explains to us this evening:
Currently, we are looking for startups with proven services or technologies in smart phone related sectors. This doesn’t mean that we only see apps ventures, but also ventures which can create eco-systems with KDDI in a broad sense. We see opportunities in U.S., Singapore, China, Korea, and Taiwan at the moment. We have already talked with some ventures in these countries. But we understand that good ventures have been born in other regions like India, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Malaysia.
When we got in touch with KDDI (TYO:9433) this past week, and a representative told us that the fund is not directly related to its incubation program Mugen Labo, which assists companies trying to launch new apps. But KDDI notes that there are possibilities that companies in Mugen Labo could potentially be invested in through this new fund, explaining that they are quite open to anyone.
With that in mind, if you are a young up-and-coming startup, Global Brain is accepting applications via its website right now.
On a related note, J-Seed Ventures announced today a new startup incubator in Tokyo called Venture Generation. They are also accepting applications.
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