DoCoMo unveils $125M venture fund targeting startups in Japan via new Innovation Village incubation program: http://bit.ly/ScXUaj
Coming on the heels of the $50M Dev. Fund platform announced by KDDI earlier this year.. we look forward to taking at tour at the this new iVillage! [Eds]
DOCOMO, INC. Japan’s leading mobile operator and provider of integrated services centered on mobility, announced today that it will accelerate its development of new businesses for smartphones and tablets by establishing the 10-billion-yen (125 million USD) DOCOMO Innovation Fund and the DOCOMO Innovation Village incubation program by next March 31.
Both undertakings, in addition to helping to upgrade smart-device services and technologies in DOCOMO’s existing fields of business, will also accelerate development of business models, services and technologies for eight new strategic fields: Media/Content, Finance/Payment, Commerce, Medical/Healthcare, Machine-to-Machine (M2M), Aggregation/Platforms, Environment/Ecology, and Security/Safety. As a result, DOCOMO expects to rapidly expand its involvement with integrated services centered on mobility.
The DOCOMO Innovation Fund will invest in promising startups and venture companies, primarily in Japan, that possess innovative business models or advanced services or technologies related to mobility and have the potential to be developed as all-new or upgraded offerings from parent DOCOMO.
Some of the investment targets are expected to come from the new DOCOMO Innovation Village incubation program, which will support startups and venture companies with resources and know-how, including office space and other infrastructure conducive to business development, and organize gatherings of company builders to hear presentations by expert corporate managers. Experts in various fields will be arranged to provide advice on management and development. The Village also will collaborate with domestic business incubators.
DOCOMO will establish an operating company to manage the DOCOMO Innovation Fund also by next March 31.
As DOCOMO proceeds with building up its portfolio of startups and venture companies in Japan, its existing U.S.-based subsidiaries DOCOMO Innovations, Inc. and DOCOMO Capital, Inc. will continue to coordinate similar investments and partnerships in North America.