The Japanese startup field has grown steadily over the last few years. Corona’s bruise didn’t seem to be a big blow. On March 25, Amazon Web Services Japan (AWS) invited Mr. Yusuke Murata of Incubate Fund to hold a roundtable for the media to discuss investment trends.The amount raised by startups has increased seven times in 10 years to 500 billion yen a year.
Mr. Yusuke Murata of Incubate Fund The Incubate Fund, which was established by Mr. Murata and is currently the representative partner, is an independent venture capital (VC). Mr. Murata has been involved in startups for 22 years, and has also been in the planning department of the Japan Venture Capital Association (JVCA) since 2015. The Incubate Fund is a VC that concentrates investment in start-up companies in the seed stage, and focuses on the three fields of digital transformation (DX) -related, public institutions, and advanced technology (deep tech) with R & D as priority investment areas in July 2020. It is said that it launched a 25 billion yen fund a month. Financing at Japanese startups has been steadily increasing since 2012. In 2019, it will be 525.4 billion yen, and in 2020 it will be about 500 billion yen, although it will be lower than 2019 due to the corona virus. There are also trends depending on the investor. Historically, Japan has many VCs that are subsidiaries of financial institutions, and in 2020, 42% were VCs. On the other hand, investment by companies (business corporations) has been increasing recently, and in 2020, one-third was from business companies. “It was seen that companies would refrain from investing in startups due to the corona virus, but it has increased,” Murata said. The movement of Corpor Venture Capital (CVC) is also active, and the number of new establishments has increased by double digits since 2015. Recently, players from traditional industries such as Shochiku, Japan Post, and JR are increasingly launching CVCs. Regarding participation in JVCA, the number of CVCs was 0 in 2012, but as of February 2021, it is 83 companies. Mr. Murata analyzes that “open innovation through mergers and acquisitions by CVCs or large companies themselves is getting hotter every year.” AI is the most invested destination, and deep tech is also an investment field, with artificial intelligence (AI) that Mr. Murata “is a driving force” at the top, SaaS (Software as a Service), fintech, clean tech, The sharing economy was ranked high. “Companies derived from the Internet and the deep tech area are half and half. Funds are being raised in areas that require large-scale research and development, such as MaaS (Mobility as a Service) and space ventures,” he said.
Areas with the highest amount of funding (from Incubate Fund materials), AI is the largest investment destination in 2019 and 2020
Startups with the highest amount of funding (from Incubate Fund materials), the largest amount of funding in 2020 was Mobility Technologies of the taxi dispatch app “Go” Murata said as one of the backgrounds of this trend. The level of entrepreneurs is rising. ” Until now, there were more entrepreneurs like outsiders than people who are active in large companies, but recently, even in large companies, people who are candidates for management are taking on the challenge of starting a business.