Jun 27, 2012

[Tech In Asia] Japan’s Food Photo App SnapDish Lands New Key Partnerships

It was just a few weeks ago that we told you about Vuzz Inc’s new SnapDish Android app aiming at a global audience. Today the company is informing us that they now have a key partnership in Korea as well, launching in the nation’s largest Android market, T Store, as well as the Japanese market qiip. Both are run by SK Planet (a subsidiary of SK Telecom), which will promote SnapDish in these markets. 
Back in April when SnapDish (www.snapdi.sh) partnered with Chinese social network Renren, their total download count stood at about 120,000. But currently that total stands at 260,000 downloads – not staggering figures, but certainly solid progress as it has more than doubled its downloads in just over two months. ...
Tech In Asia 6/26/2012 [en]

  • SnapDish is a photo sharing service for smartphone focusing on dishes which users cook. It seems focusing on Asian market for global expansion, but it would be successful in other regions as well since cooking dishes is universal activity. 
  • http://snapdi.sh/ja/

Hyper Internets, Crowd Funding CAMPFIRE Operator, Raises Capital / Cnet Japan

Hyper Internets, an operator of social platform, CAMPFIRE which gathers fund and supporters to launch projects such as art or product development, announced allocation of new shares to East Ventures, paperboy&co., and VOYAGE VENTURES. The amount is around 50 million yen. It is the second fundraising round following 26 million in June, 2011. ...

CAMPFIRE has had 160 projects gathering 58 million yen in total since the launch a year ago. Among them, about 80% of the projects are realized raising 47 million yen. ...

Cnet Japan 6/27/2012 [jp]

  • Several crow funding services emerged in 2011 in Japan such as READYFOR, Green Girl as well as CAMPFIRE. They have not yet had so much traction as Kickstarter in US. It is interesting to see how CAMPFIRE will boost the business with the fundraise.
  • http://hiinc.jp/

Jun 19, 2012

Enigmo Goes IPO On Mothers / Cnet Japan

The planned date of IPO is July 24th. ...

Enigmo was founded in 2004. It started providing BUYMA, social shopping service from 2005. It had also operated several services such as promotion service using blog, goods sharing service, and online magazine service, but currently it focuses on BUYMA and photo sharing service, stulio.

Annual revenue ending January, 2012 is 851 million yen, and operating profit is 205 million yen.

Cnet Japan 6/19/2012 [jp]

  • BUYMA allows buyers in Japan to buy brand items around the world from sellers living in 70 countries. Both sellers and buyers pay commission to BUYMA when a deal closed.
  • http://www.enigmo.co.jp/

Docomo.com Acquires Imanara, Coupon Service For Smartphone / MarkeZine

Docomo.com announced acquisition of Imanara, which provides sales promotion system using mobile. Docomo.com buys Imanara's stocks from its parent company, Location Value. Imanara operates a service allowing users to get coupons with limited number and time such as if you buy within 30 minutes, you get 50% discount.

MarkeZine 6/15/2012 [jp]

  • Docomo.com provides mobile marketing/promotion services. Location-based coupon service is very reasonable to add to its service offerings. Location-based ads or coupons have been considered to be the next big thing for several years, but it does not seem to become a smash hit yet.
  • http://imanara.jp/

Classified Ads Site, JMTY, Raises 150M Yen From KDDI And Others / @Press

JMTY conducted allocation of new shares of about 150 million yen to KDDI's corporate venture fund, Mitsubishi UFJ Capital's operating fund and Infinity Ventures' fund.

JMTY was founded in February, 2011 to operate classified ads site. The service, JMTY launched in April, 2011. ...

JMTY has currently about over 200,000 monthly active users. ...

@Press 6/15/2012 [jp]

  • JMTY was founded by Infinity Ventures with 150 million yen, which is quite large amount in Japan for a seed stage startup. It is interesting to see how KDDI leverages the investment for its business.
  • http://jmty.jp/

Jun 8, 2012

Internet Home Appliance Maker, Garapon Raises 79M Yen From Broadmedia / Venture Now

Internet home appliance startup, Garapon raised 79.5 million yen by allocation of new shares to Broadmedia, which operates broadcasting and contents distribution business. The company aims to speed up development of Garapon TV device and Garapon TV site, TV program review site with the money. ...

It plans to expand sales areas of Garapon TV device from current Tokyo, Chiba, Saitama, and Kanagawa to nationwide. ...

Venture Now 6/8/2012 [jp]

  • Garapon TV records up to seven channels for 24 hours / 60 days. The recorded TV programs can be viewed with iOS devices, Android devices, or PC through Internet.
  • Broadmedia operates wide range of services related to contents distribution including video content production, broadcasting, and contents delivery network. There could be various opportunities for synergy between two companies.
  • http://garapon.tv/

Jun 7, 2012

MUSE & Co. Raises 60M Yen From Infinity Ventures / Venture Now

MUSE & Co. operates curation-based fashion commerce site. The CEO says it plans to use the money for user acquisition, especially in web marketing and PR.

MUSE & Co. is a members-only fashion shopping service targeting women, which was officially launched on May 16. Its main target users are women between 20s and 40s. The service is available fro PC, smartphone and feature phone. ...

It utilizes flash marketing method limiting duration and quantity for sale which starts twenty o'clock every day. ...

Venture Now 6/7/2012 [jp]

  • Fashion commerce seems considered to be one of few promising areas for EC sites. Amazon.com started TV commercial recently focusing on fashion items. Meanwhile, the largest fashion commerce site, ZOZOTOWN announced downward revision for FY2011 ending March 2012 for the first time since its IPO in 2007. It may be a good timing for startups to enter the market, if they can offer different value proposition than those big players because overall forecast seems good but big players are not necessarily doing very well.
  • http://museco.jp/

Jun 6, 2012

Cookpad Starts Selling Recipe By Professional / Cnet Japan

Cookpad opens Recipe Store which allows users to buy recipes by cuisine professionals or chefs. At the store, users can buy a recipe set which includes 20 recipes from a recipe book of professionals. The price starts from 500 yen. Cookpad ID is needed for purchasing them. In addition to PC, it is available on smartphone web and Android application. ...

Cnet Japan 6/5/2012 [jp]

  • Cookpad has over 1 million recipes. It monetizes in three ways, paid-users, marketing service for food related industry, and advertisement. It is interesting to see if the new paid-contents can become the fourth source of revenue. 
  • http://cookpad.com/

DeNA Partners With Renren, SNS In China / Cnet Japan

DeNA's subsidiary, DeNA China, announced partnership with Renren, real name SNS with 154.2 million registered users in China.

Both companies opened dedicated space on Renren's Android app where users can download games of Chinese version of Mobage. Users who download Mobage app from the site can use games and community functions of Mobage with only Renren ID. ...

Cnet Japan 6/5/2012 [jp]

  • DeNA is actively proceeding alliance strategy in China. It partners with China's three large mobile operators, China Mobile, China Unicom, and China Telecom, which was announced in this March. Since China is a very difficult market for foreign companies, it could be a right strategy. However, Rakuten withdrew from China regardless of joint venture with Chinese big Internet company, Baidu, so the partnership would not necessarily promise success in the super competitive market. 

Jun 5, 2012

Mangazenkan.com Operator, TORICO Raises 200M Yen From Itochu Technology Ventures / Venture Now

Manga shopping site, Mangazenkan.com operator, TORICO announced that it allocates new shares of 200 million  yen to Itochu Technology Ventures.

Mangazenkan.com is an EC sites launched on August, 2006. It originally sells only whole collection of series (zenkan in Japanese) of manga titles, but now it provides more services related to manga. Total buyers surpasses 500,000 and it sells manga in 42 countries. It has over 80,000 titles. ...

Along with the fundraising, it plans to enter ebook distribution business and also set up foreign branch offices.

Venture Now 6/4/2012 [jp]

  • The company provides iOS/Android application to allow users to read several pages of manga and purchase.
  • http://torico-corp.com/