New week, new roundup! Catch the latest in crowdsourcing, amateur sports management, fintech, and more.
Social media community platform MachiMachi publishes crowd-sourced reviews and information about local businesses and happenings from people living within the same area. Users simply have to input a phone number to register and confirm their address in about a minute. Users increased threefold in half a year, and the platform now has 6,300 registered users.
Previously known as Proper Inc., MachiMachi collaborates with local governments in Tokyo like Shibuya, Toshima, and Bunkyo. The company recently announced that it’s collaborating with Mito City in the Ibaraki Prefecture.
Last week, MachiMachi raised around US$1.5 million from ANRI, BEENEXT, among others. With these funds, the company is looking to increase its marketing, expand into new areas, and continue to establish ties with local municipalities.
Link Sports has developed TeamHub, an amateur sports management application that allows teams to organize their calendars, create scorecards, and contact members, among others. According to TechCrunch Japan , the app currently has 2,000 unique registered teams. Users can pick from monthly plans worth $US9, $US18, and $US27.
On November 22, Link Sports announced it has raised US$900,000 from iSGS Investment Works Inc., KLab Venture Partners, and Mainichi Newspapers Co. Ltd. The startup is looking to leverage the money to grow TeamHub and to expand its scope to include rugby, basketball, and volleyball.
Link Sports also offers other services like AZrena, a sports media news site.
Tokyo-based Crowd Realty gathers money to finance initiatives likeKyomachia No. 1 Fund, a project to renovate traditional-style Kyoto homes into vacation rentals. Though it may sound similar to Tomaruba, Crowd Realty works on a wider range of projects, such as an initiative to create a shared space for nursery and kindergarten schools in Tokyo’s Shibuya ward. To date, Crown Realty’s works have ranged from about US$17,000 to US$1.5 million and include locations outside Japan, such as Estonia.
The real estate crowdfunding company recently got around US$3.1 million from SBI FinTech Fund and three affiliated companies of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG): The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Mitsubishi UFJ Capital and Kabu.com Securities.
Xenodata Lab is developing an AI finance data analytics tool that leverages natural language processing (NLP). Xenodata Lab’s main service, xenoFlash, analyzes Japanese stocks and then delivers financial results highlights in about a minute. By using XBRL (eXtensible Business Reporting Language) analysis plus PDF graph and table analysis, xenoFlash’s platform converts accumulated data into tabulated data. From there, xenoFlash takes the synthesized data and applies its AI algorithm to formulate insights and present useful financial information. Okasan Securities, Tokai Tokyo Financial Holdings, and Kabu.com Securities are among its clients. While the company has already secured a number of clients, they are in a crowded space, with companies globally launching similar NLP based algorithm platforms.
As announced on November 22, Xenodata raised its series A round of US$2.24 million from several of Japan’s banking giants and financial services firms, inlcuding Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (BTMU), Teikoku Databank, DBJ Capital, Mizuho Capital, and SMBC Venture Capital.
Plus Medi is an early-stage Japanese startup that’s developing MyHospital, a medical care and management app. The app aims to help users by reducing the time they spend at the hospital or doctor’s office as well as streamline processes. MyHospital will also include features like bills payment, medication management, and online paperwork. Plus Medi is taking on a big challenge to digitize medical processes and records, but companies like Freee show that disruptive technologies are capable of replacing legacy tools and can become highly valuable.
For its seed round, the startup received an undisclosed amount of funding from SMBC VC, aSTART, Vector Inc., and Nippontect Systems. Plus Medi is looking to use the money to create MyHospital.
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