BrandArena: Sony, Daiwa Securities Announce Establishment of Innovation Growth Fund in Support of Startup Companies

Wednesday 3 July 2019

Sony, Daiwa Securities Announce Establishment of Innovation Growth Fund in Support of Startup Companies

Sony Corporation and Daiwa Capital Holdings Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of Daiwa Securities Group Inc. yesterday announced the establishment of Innovation Growth Ventures Co., Ltd. (IGV), a joint venture company created for the purpose of establishing a joint investment fund.

IGV has recently completed the first Limited Partner commitment for its Innovation Growth Fund (hereafter the "Fund"), which was established for the purpose of investing in startup companies in key high-growth industries.

As of the first closing in June 2019, financial institutions such as Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation and Osaka Shoko Shinkin Bank, as well as entities such as Mitsubishi UFJ Lease & Finance Company Limited and educational institution which operates university have signed on to the Fund as limited partners. IGV will leverage the platform of Sony group and Daiwa Securities Group while supporting the Fund's portfolio companies and striving to maximize the Fund's performance. Ultimately, the Fund aims to be 20 billion yen in size.

Sony established Sony Innovation Fund, its corporate venture fund, in July 2016.  With offices in Japan, North America, and Europe, Sony Innovation Fund has been carrying out investment activities targeting startup companies in business domains such as AI and robotics. It has conducted over 40 investments in the past three years, and, with the establishment of the Fund, it aims to expand its investment activities targeting startup companies.

According to Toshimoto Mitomo, Executive Vice President, Sony Corporation: "Through its corporate venture capital activities to date, Sony has incubated the next generation of technologies and startups while promoting open innovation. With the establishment of this fund through IGV, we hope to accelerate open innovation while contributing to social development. Sony will support IGV's efforts to maximize the performance of this fund, based on the experience it has cultivated through its corporate venture capital activities."

"Daiwa Securities Group has held traditional securities as its core business while striving to expand its business portfolio as an integrated securities group with a hybrid business model. Through this fund, we hope to contribute and provide various forms of support to our investment targets, including sourcing, support with stock market listing, and matching support with other listed firms. We believe that the integration of Sony's insight of cutting-edge technologies and Daiwa Securities Group's expertise in finance will lead to the creation of a new kind of venture capital business while providing the spark for new trends in the venture capital ecosystem", said Yoshihisa Kaneko, Executive Managing Director, Daiwa Securities Co. Ltd.

In his remark, Atsuhito Hosoi, Representative Director, Innovation Growth Ventures Inc. said IGV will fully leverage the expertise and resources of both groups, which includes Sony's global network, formed through its globe-spanning business developments, and its innovative spirit and highly renowned technological prowess; as well as Daiwa Securities Group's wealth of management expertise in venture capital funds. In doing so, IGV will construct a high-quality business portfolio and promote value creation for its portfolio companies, thereby maximizing the performance of this fund.

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