Rakuten Ventures Launches 100 Million USD Global Fund

  Rakuten Ventures Launches 100 Million USD Global Fund

Corporate venture capital fund to focus on early stage investments in Israel,
                           Asia Pacific and the USA

Business Wire

TOKYO -- June 30, 2014

Rakuten Ventures today announced the launch of a US$100 million global
investment fund. The fund will target investments in startups and companies in
Israel, Asia Pacific, and the USA and builds on the success of the Southeast
Asia fund, which was originally launched in 2013 and counts Carousell,
Visenze, Coda Payments and Send Anywhere among its investment portfolio.

The larger global fund gives Rakuten Ventures the opportunity to empower the
startup ecosystem beyond Japan and Southeast Asia and positively affect
Internet services globally, while giving the fund more avenues for growth. It
also supports Rakuten Ventures’ broader goal of long-term investments with
startups that have the technology and potential to enable better user
experience and facilitation. Over time, this will include an increased focus
on growing the ecosystem, technology, membership and financial returns.

The fund will focus broadly on early stage investments in companies from the
technology industry that are able to deliver financial returns with strategic
relevance. This broader focus gives the fund a wider horizon for the type of
startups and companies it interacts with, and how it interacts with them. This
will include having a laser focus on value for company, investing in strong
teams, leaders, technology and passion to give Rakuten a stake in future user
interaction.

The fund operations will be run out of Singapore, with Saemin Ahn, the
Managing Partner of Rakuten Ventures, acting as the fund advisor.

Commenting on the emergence of startups offering innovative solutions to old
problems, Saemin said “If you just look at the last couple of years, companies
like Waze and Viber are great examples of companies taking on massive issues
like transportations and communications, breaking them down to their basics,
and providing an engaging and sticky user experience that people have come to
love and depend on. More Asia-based VCs are venturing out into different
regions to look at investment as long-term growth vehicles. Since 2013,
Rakuten Ventures has been one of such VCs to aggressively invest larger
amounts into younger companies, to enable them to focus on product and service
development.”

While the fund’s immediate focus will be on companies in Israel, Asia Pacific
and the US, Rakuten Ventures plans to take an aggressive approach in expanding
operations around the globe.

About Rakuten Ventures

Rakuten Ventures is an early stage corporate venture capital fund focused on
empowering the startup ecosystem to positively affect Internet services
globally. The fund was originally launched in 2013 and counts Carousell,
Visenze, Coda Payments and Send Anywhere among its investment portfolio. In
June 2014, Rakuten Ventures launched a US$100 million global fund to target
startups and companies in Israel, Asia Pacific, and the USA, with a focus on
companies that can enable better user experience and facilitation. For more
information, please contact global-rv@mail.rakuten.com

Contact:

Hotwire PR
Rebecca Honeyman, 1-646-738-8960
RakutenUS@hotwirepr.com
 
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