Japan’s Global Brain co-invests $20m in crowdfunding platform operator Campfire

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Japanese venture capital firm Global Brain has invested in Tokyo-based crowdfunding platform operator Campfire through its GB-VII Growth Fund Investment Limited Partnership (GB-VII), according to the fund’s announcement.

It is understood that Global Brain and KDDI Corporation co-invested JPY2.2 billion ($20 million) in Campfire’s  Series C round.

KDDI Corporation made the investment through KDDI Open Innovation Fund, which was launched last year with a view to investing JPY20 billion in startups related to 5G technology.

Founded in 2011, Campfire allows individuals, small businesses, NPO, schools, local governments to fundraise for their projects and challenges. The company offers various services including donation, reward and lending-based crowdfunding.

Since its formation, Campfire has raised over 11.2 billion yen and supported more than 21,000 projects through over 1 million patrons (as of April 22, 2019).

“GB highly evaluated Campfire’s unique vision and strong management capability. We are committed to leverage our resources and network to further strengthen their business,” the firm said in its announcement.

Global Brain Corporation made the final close of its sixth fund at around $180 million in 2017, a little over the targeted amount.

The fund had earlier set out to raise $175 million and had made its first close at $130 million at the time of its launch in December 2016 at the firm’s annual Alliance Forum.

The fund, the largest one raised by Global Brain since it was set up in 2001, seeks to invest in sectors including Internet of Things (IoT), hardware, enterprise, robotics, education and commerce solutions and focuses on investments in Japan, Silicon Valley, South Korea, Southeast Asia, and Israel.

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.