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[3/10-3/17] Noteworthy startup news and funding information


Among the startup news and funding information announced from March 10, 2023 to March 17, 2023, we will pick up and deliver the projects that JP Startups (Japasta) is paying attention to.

Editor's Comments

The impression that this week was a lot of funding for startups that are achieving solid growth. Procurement from companies that develop products and services that utilize next-generation technologies, such as Web 3.0, automated transport robots, and semiconductor devices using diamond materials, was also notable.

Among them, this week, Things which operates "PRISM" which can build a product development database with no code, LexxPluss which develops an automatic transport system, Unilab which provides "Aimitsu", Funds which operates a loan investment platform "Funds", Picked up 5 companies of Triple W Japan that develop and provide the excretion prediction device "DFree".

In particular, Triple W Japan's funding has been announced for the first time in a long time. We have developed and provided an epoch-making device that predicts the timing of excretion using ultrasound, and have been featured in many media so far. In February 2022, it was adopted by the Tokyo Metropolitan Small and Medium Enterprise Support Corporation "14th Medical Device Industry Entry Promotion Subsidy Project", and in April of the same year, nursing care insurance was applied, making it easy to introduce at nursing care facilities. the environment was arranged. With this procurement, which will be Series D, there are high expectations for how the company will develop in the future.

In this article, we will introduce the procurement details of each company in detail.

Funding Information

[Pre-series A] Things, which develops a no-code product development platform, has raised a total of 220 million yen (announced on March 15, 2023)

Credit:Company Press Release

A cloud-based product development platform that allows you to build your own parts data model with no code and centrally manage product development information "PRISM" Things Co., Ltd., which develops In the pre-series A, the company implemented a third-party allotment of 220 million yen in total. With Global Brain as the lead investor, the underwriters are SMBC Venture Capital Co., Ltd., Shizuoka Capital Co., Ltd., Shinsei Corporate Investment Co., Ltd., PKSHA Capital and existing investor ANRI.

With the spread of the new coronavirus infection and the global shortage of semiconductors as one of the triggers, issues that urgently need to be resolved in the Japanese manufacturing industry have become apparent. They are "strengthening the supply chain" and "improving the ability to recover from unforeseen circumstances." In order to optimize the entire supply chain, many manufacturers are now increasing spending on IT and beginning to focus on inter-departmental data coordination.

On the other hand, the harmful effects of legacy systems, symbolized by the “2025 cliff problem,” are also occurring in the manufacturing industry. Things has developed a no-code product development platform "PRISM" for medium-sized processing and assembly manufacturing companies in response to such issues in the manufacturing industry. The database necessary for product development, such as parts lists, drawings, and cost management, is realized as a cloud service that anyone can easily build with no code.

With the official release of "PRISM" scheduled for May, we decided to implement this funding as we judged it urgent to accelerate development. Based on the funds raised, the company will accelerate system development and strengthen the customer support system, aiming to quickly build a platform that can become a core system for the manufacturing industry. Here is the original release.

[Series A] LexxPluss, which develops next-generation automated transport systems, raises approximately 1.45 billion yen. Aiming to expand overseas business by establishing a US subsidiary (announced on March 15, 2023)

Credit:Company Press Release

LexxPluss Co., Ltd., which develops and sells robotics and automation products that will serve as next-generation industrial infrastructure, has a total of 11 underwriters, including DRONE FUND Co., Ltd. and SBI Investment Co., Ltd., and has raised about 1.45 billion yen through a third-party allotment. has completed funding. With this procurement, the company's total procurement amount has reached 1.8 billion yen.

Due to the declining birthrate and aging population, Japan's working population is expected to continue to decline significantly in the future. It is thought that the impact will extend to the manufacturing and logistics industries that support the foundation of society, and the current situation is that production sites in both industries are rushing to invest in automation equipment as a drastic solution to the labor shortage.

Furthermore, the “2024 problem” is serious in the logistics industry. With the nationwide shortage of drivers expected, companies are promoting efforts to improve transportation efficiency, and there is a growing need to automate the transportation process at distribution centers.

In response to such issues, the company has developed a self-developed automatic guided vehicle that combines autonomous driving robot and unmanned guided vehicle technology. "Hybrid-AMR" and robot integrated control system "Konnectt" handle. By developing and providing everything from hardware to software, we contribute to the automation of each process at manufacturing and logistics sites. Actual operation has already started at Sagawa Express Co., Ltd.

Based on the funds procured this time, the company aims to expand its business in the automated transport solutions market in the United States, where needs have increased since the corona crisis, with the US corporation established in February 2023 as a foothold. The company will also expand the scale of its current technology open partnership program globally, aiming for 100 companies to participate in the next two years. In addition, in anticipation of market expansion, the company plans to increase the number of manufacturing and testing bases in Japan to three, and expand the annual production scale of automatic transfer robots to 1,500 units in two years. Here is the original release.

[Series C] Unilab, which operates the BtoB ordering platform “Aimitsu”, has raised 2.58 billion yen (announced on March 15, 2023)

Credit:Company Press Release

BtoB ordering platform "Aimitsu" Unilab Co., Ltd., which provides JIC Venture Growth Fund No. 1 Investment Business Limited Liability Partnership as the lead investor, has acquired about 30% through a third-party allotment of shares to existing shareholders Mobile Internet Capital and two other companies. Raised 1.3 billion yen. This time, we will also raise funds through dead financing from financial institutions. We raised 780 million yen in long-term debt from Japan Finance Corporation, SBI Shinsei Bank, Shoko Chukin Bank, etc., and 500 million yen in short-term debt from two megabanks. As a result, the total amount of funding this time will be 2.58 billion yen, and the company's total funding amount is expected to reach 4.6 billion yen.

Since Series B, the company has been using “Aimitsu” "Aimitsu SaaS" "Aimitsu CLOUD" 3 services. In addition to expanding the categories of its main service, the order concierge service has also evolved significantly, which has increased the support of repeaters. As a result, since the start of the service in 2014, the number of companies using it for ordering and receiving orders has steadily increased, supported by factors such as increased demand for business matching due to the corona crisis. The total number of orders placed by “Aimitsu” exceeded 250,000.

The funds raised this time will be used for product enhancement, marketing, organization and personnel expansion in anticipation of a future IPO. In addition, since series B, the company has strengthened its management structure in preparation for an IPO. In the future, the company will work on business promotion with a nine-person system of four directors and five executive officers. Here is the original release.

[Series D] Triple W Japan, which develops and provides the excretion prediction device "DFree", raises a total of 1 billion yen (announced March 17, 2023)

Credit:Company Press Release

Triple W Japan, which plans, develops, and sells the excretion prediction device "DFree," has completed raising a total of 1 billion yen in series D through a third-party allotment and long-term dead. This time, we raised funds mainly from businessman Yusaku Maezawa and financial institutions, and as a result, the company's total procurement amount reached about 3.5 billion yen.

handled by the company "DFree" is a service that uses a small, lightweight device attached to the abdomen to detect changes in the bladder with an ultrasonic sensor, enabling real-time understanding of the degree of urine accumulation. Predict the timing of excretion and notify dedicated equipment, PCs, and smart devices. This contributes to the improvement of continence care and QOL tailored to the user at the site of nursing care, etc., and the reduction of the burden on the caregiver. It can be used for a wide range of purposes, from home care, medical institutions, nursing homes, to individuals.

In 2022, with the addition of "excretion prediction support equipment" as a category of specific welfare equipment sales, "DFree" can also be applied to nursing care insurance. Users who have been certified as needing support or long-term care can use the facilities at their own cost of 10-30%.

The funds raised this time will be invested in strengthening corporate sales and support systems, strengthening marketing and public relations for individuals, improving equipment and applications, commercializing bowel movement prediction equipment, and strengthening the organizational structure for IPO preparations. Here is the original release.

* The 1 billion yen procurement announced this time is the total amount of the third-party allocation of shares, borrowings, and subsidies and grants that have been adopted in the past year.

[Series D] Funds, which operates the loan investment online platform “Funds”, has raised a total of 3.6 billion yen (announced on March 14, 2023)

Credit:Company Press Release

Lending investment online platform "Funds" Funds Co., Ltd., which operates , has raised a total of approximately 3.6 billion yen through a third-party allocation of shares and dead financing. In the third-party allotment, ANRI is the lead investor, with eight existing underwriters including Global Brain, Itochu Technology Ventures, and Mizuho Capital, and two domestic and overseas institutional investors and Rakuten Securities as new underwriters. , Cygames Capital, and Mercuria Holdings participated. The debt borrowers are Mizuho Bank, Chiba Bank, and the Shoko Chukin Bank. The company has completed a total of approximately 6.8 billion yen through this funding.

The stock market and the funding environment for companies before and after IPOs have been deteriorating due to the effects of global financial tightening. As a result, the use of dead finance is progressing worldwide. Especially in the United States, borrowings by companies before and after IPOs increased. There is also data that the procurement scale expanded sixfold from 2010 to 2020.

In Japan as well, the amount of non-equity financing has been on the rise in recent years. In particular, the government announced in November 2022 the Five-Year Startup Development Plan, which also mentions the promotion of financing for startups by banks. In addition, there are issues unique to Japan, such as the lack of equity funding for late-stage startups and the inadequate funding environment after IPOs.

The company provides a loan investment online platform “Funds” for such a financing environment. We have created a service that allows general investors to invest in units of 1 yen through a silent partnership contract in a fund that a company has set up to raise funds, expanding new options in the corporate fundraising environment. We have also strengthened cooperation with major financial institutions such as Rakuten Securities and Mitsubishi UFJ Bank, and currently the number of registered users has exceeded 73,000, and the cumulative amount solicited has exceeded 30 billion yen.

With this funding, the company aims to expand its dead financing support for growing companies, and plans to expand the functions of Funds, increase the number of partner partners, and strengthen recruitment and marketing. The idea is to circulate the deposits and savings that are dormant in household budgets through business to growth companies and lead to the revitalization of the economy. Here is the original release.

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