9 Best Venture Capital (VC) Firms in Japan

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Ready to elevate your startup in Japan with venture capital? This guide is your ticket to the 9 top VC investors in the region. We’ve lined up a list of standout VCs known for their commitment to nurturing young companies like yours. Whether you’re after capital, strategic advice, or industry connections, knowing the best players in the Japanese market is your first step toward potential collaboration. Dive into our list to discover which VC firm might be the perfect match for your startup.

Accord Ventures

Accord Ventures is a venture capital firm primarily investing in high-potential technology companies, focusing on the Internet and IoT sectors. The firm believes in Asia’s potential and the power of diversity. Accord has made more than 50 investments and is usually involved in about five investment rounds per year.

Headquarters: Japan

Investment Geography: USA, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, Malaysia

Operating since: 2015

Investment Focus: IT-enabled platform businesses, Enterprise/B2B IT, Software, IoT, AI, FinTech

Stages: Series A, Series B

Number of investments: 52

Number of exits: 3

Check size: $1m – $4m

Notable investments: Optfit, Sokudan, Mawari

Founders/Key People: Fumihiko Ishimaru, Takayuki Mizuki

Website: https://accordventures.co.jp/en/ 

Drone Fund

Drone Fund is a unique venture capital firm focused exclusively on the drone space. It provides portfolio companies with capital investment, operational support, collaborative planning, and regulatory assistance. Drone Fund invests across the entire spectrum of the drone industry, including hardware, software, core technology, and integration. They actively participate in and organize various events and expos globally, emphasizing their commitment to expanding the entire drone space.

Headquarters: Japan

Investment Geography: Japan, USA, Germany, Canada, Brazil, Singapore, New Zealand, Norway

Operating since: 2017

Stages: Seed, Series A, Series B

Investment Focus: Drones (Air Mobility, Drone Tech, DaaS, SaaS)

Number of investments: 89

Number of exits: 7

Check size: $250k – $8m

Notable investments: TeTra aviation, SkyDrive

Founders/Key People: Soki Omae, Miki Temmyo

Website: https://dronefund.vc/en/ 

Kepple Africa Ventures

Kepple Africa Ventures, established in 2018 and based in Tokyo, Japan, is a venture capital firm that focuses on investing in startups across Africa. It targets companies in the early stages of development, including seed-stage, early-stage, and later-stage financing. The firm primarily invests in sectors such as information technology, fintech, and B2C. It operates with a mission to support startups and has engaged in significant activities such as partnering with Nigeria-based Private Equity Firm Verod Capital Management to form Verod-Kepple Africa Ventures, which has a corpus of USD 100 million. Additionally, Kepple Africa Ventures has been instrumental in investing in and supporting African tech startups, highlighting its commitment to nurturing the continent’s entrepreneurial ecosystem​​​​​​.

Headquarters: Japan

Investment Geography: Nigeria, Kenya, United States, Egypt, South Africa, Ghana, France, Côte d’Ivoire, Mauritius, Tunisia, Japan, United Kingdom.

Operating since: 2019

Investment Focus: Africa (FinTech, EdTech, Digital Health, HealthTech, Digital Media, E-commerce, AgTech, FoodTech, Automotive, Enterprise Software, Real Estate, PropTech, Logistics, HRTech, MarTech, Marketplaces).

Stages: Pre-Seed, Seed, Post-Seed, Series A, Series B+.

Number of investments: 70

Number of exits: 3

Check size: $500K – $3M

Notable investments: Moove, PEG Africa

Founders/Key People: Takahiro Kanzaki

Website: https://kepple-africa-ventures.com/

Rebright Partners

Rebright Partners is an Asia-focused early-stage venture capital firm, established to invest in technology startups across the region. With prominent Japanese corporate and institutional backers, the firm specializes in nurturing early-stage tech startups. It leverages a robust network spanning South East Asia, India, and Japan, providing a platform for startups aiming to expand and build partnerships in these markets. The leadership team at Rebright Partners includes seasoned professionals with diverse expertise. 

Headquarters: Japan (Tokyo)

Investment Geography: South East Asia, India, and Japan

Operating since: 2008

Investment Focus: Consumer Internet, FinTech, EdTech, HealthTech/Digital Health, E-commerce, Media & Entertainment, Mobility, Enterprise/B2B, SaaS/Software, AI/Data Analytics, Blockchain, DeepTech, AdTech, Logistics, AgTech

Stages: Seed, Series A

Number of investments: 65

Number of exits: 17

Check size: $1m – $5m

Notable investments: Inshorts, Essenvia, Monster API

Founders/Key People: Takeshi Ebihara, Bindu Eswara Reddy

Website: http://www.rebrightpartners.com/ 

Strive Ventures

Strive Ventures, previously known as GREE Ventures, is a venture capital firm headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, with an additional office in Singapore. Founded on November 11, 2011, the firm rebranded in May 2019 to better reflect its independent investment strategy and address confusion regarding its financial and management structure unrelated to its initial parent company, GREE, a Tokyo-based mobile game developer. Strive specializes in seed-stage investments, focusing on startups across various Asian markets.

Headquarters: Singapore

Investment Geography: Japan, Singapore, United States, India, Indonesia, Philippines, Czech Republic, Malaysia, Mexico, China, Nepal.

Operating since: 2011

Investment Focus: B2B/Enterprise, Software/SaaS, Cloud, Data Analytics, AdTech/MarTech, Construction, Consumer Internet, FinTech, EdTech, Digital Health, E-commerce, Digital Media, Sports, TravelTech

Stage: Pre-Seed, Seed, Series A, Series B.

Number of investments: 148

Number of exits: 26

Check size: $100K – $2M

Notable investments: Grab, Hasura

Founders/Key People: Yusuke Amano

Website: https://strive.vc/en/

CyberAgent Capital

CyberAgent Capital operates several funds, each focusing on different geographical regions and stages of investment. They have multiple funds for investments in Japan, China, and Southeast Asia. The fund sizes vary, with examples including ¥6,000,000,000 for the CA Startups Internet Fund 3, L.P. in Japan and US$19.0 million for the CA-JAIC China Internet Fund Ⅱ, L.P. 

Headquarters: Japan

Investment Geography: Japan, USA, Vietnam, Indonesia, China, Thailand, South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Canada, Australia

Operating since: 2006

Stages: Seed, Series A

Investment Focus: Internet (Enterprise Software,MarTech,FinTech,Digital Media, EdTech, Gaming, FoodTech,JobTech, TravelTech,Digital Health, HealthTech, Social, PropTech, E-commerce, Marketplaces, IoT,Blockchain,Logistics,Mobility)

Number of investments: 396

Number of exits: 144

Check size: $100k – $5m

Notable investments: VNG, Tokopedia

Founders/Key People: Nguyen Tuan, Takashi Kitao

Website: https://www.cyberagentcapital.com/en/ 

Globis Capital Partners

Globis Capital Partners, established in 1996 by Yoshito Hori, is a Japanese venture capital firm based in Tokyo. As a significant player in the venture capital space, Globis has a focused approach toward investing in companies, predominantly taking on the role of a lead investor. Its success is reflected in its involvement with numerous IPOs, with 36 of its investments reaching IPO status. Moreover, Globis Capital Partners manages a substantial fund size, with its assets under management (AUM) exceeding $1 billion. 

Headquarters: Japan

Investment Geography: Japan, USA, Singapore, Malaysia, United Kingdom, Israel

Operating since: 1996

Stages: Seed,Series A,Series B

Investment Focus: Consumer Marketplaces, HealthTech, E-commerce, FinTech, InsurTech, IoT, EdTech, Games,Digital Media,Social,Mobile,PropTech,FoodTech,Enterprise Software,AI,Data Analytics,Mobility,Cloud Infrastructure, ConstructionTech, Logistics, HRTech, MarTech, Drones, SalesTech, Robotics, Semiconductors,Hardware, Advanced Manufacturing

Number of investments: 193

Number of exits: 62

Check size: $1m – $50m

Notable investments: Mercari, Telexistence, 

Founders/Key People: Emre Yuasa, Kosuke Fukagawa

Website: https://www.globiscapital.co.jp/en/ 

Sony Innovation Fund (CVC)

The Sony Innovation Fund (SIF), established by Sony Corporation in 2016, operates as its venture capital arm focusing on early-stage technology startups. Headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, SIF invests across various sectors, including entertainment, fintech, healthcare, the Internet of Things (IoT), mobility, deep tech, and sensor technologies. Beyond providing financial investment, SIF aims to foster collaboration between startups and Sony, offering access to Sony’s global network and resources to support business creation in related lines of business.

Headquarters: Japan

Investment Geography: Japan, United States, United Kingdom, India, Germany, Switzerland, Israel, Canada, Ireland, Taiwan, Singapore, Belgium.

Operating since: 2016

Investment Focus: Entertainment, FinTech/InsurTech, Health Care, Mobility, SportsTech, FoodTech, AgTech, EdTech, SaaS/Software, Deep Tech, Sensor Tech, IoT, Robotics, AI, Drone, Environment.

Stage: Pre-Seed, Seed, Series A, Series B.

Number of investments: 190

Number of exits: 11

Check size: $10M – $50M

Notable investments: Trax, Slice

Founders/Key People: Joseph Tou

Website: https://www.sonyinnovationfund.com/

Z Venture Capital

Z Venture Capital, established in 2012, is the venture capital arm of Z Holdings. It primarily invests in companies operating in the insurance and finance industries. The firm was formed following the merger of Line Ventures and Yahoo Japan Capital (YJ Capital) in April 2021. Z Venture Capital is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan.

Headquarters: Japan

Investment Geography: Japan, United States, South Korea, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Germany, China, Philippines, India, Vietnam.

Operating since: 2012

Investment Focus: Software, Commerce, Media, FinTech, SaaS,AI,Data, Crypto, Healthcare/Digital Health,HRTech,EdTech,Cyber Security.

Stage: Seed, Series A, Series B.

Number of investments: 49

Number of exits: 1

Check size: $10K – $1M

Notable investments: NinjaVan, SoundHound.

Founders/Key People: Shinichiro Hori

Website: https://zvc.vc/en/

Conclusion

You’re now armed with information on Japan’s leading VC investors, so what’s next? Take this insight and align it with your startup’s vision and needs. The right venture capital partner can provide more than funding—they can be a catalyst for growth and expansion in Japan’s thriving market. Start preparing your approach to these VCs, tailoring your pitch to resonate with their investment philosophy. Your next major step towards success could begin with the partnership you form today.

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