Japan: Money Forward to list on TSE Mothers by end-Sept

The Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE) in Japan.

Tokyo-based Money Forward, a SaaS (software as a service) accounting and personal finance management (PFM) startup, plans to execute a public listing on the Mothers Market of the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE).

It will conduct its initial public offer (IPO) on the TSE Mothers Market on 29 September with plans to offer 1,617,700 shares for public subscription and to sell up to 382,300 shares in over-allotment options, for a total of 931,000 shares. SMBC Nikko Securities will lead the underwriting. No price range has been established.

The Mothers Markets is a board on the TSE  – the world third largest stock exchange after the NYSE and NASDAQ – catering to new enterprises with high growth potential. Although listing requirements with regards to size exist, such as a JPY 1 billion threshold for estimated market capitalisation upon listing, there are no minimum revenue or profit thresholds needed.

The firm launched its accounting SaaS service in November 2013 but was founded in May 2012 under its previous trade name of Money Book. It started by offering online personal accounting for individuals to permit simple management of daily expenses through the integration of their bank passbook and credit purchase history with information obtained from their web bank and credit accounts.

In aggregate, it has raised JPY 4.8 billion ($43.4 million) in equity funding from key investors that include JAFCO (14.9%), Credit Saison (4.11%) and Monex Ventures (4.785%).

Other investors that have backed the company include Shizuoka Bank, SBI Holdings, Yamaguchi Financial Group, The Toho Bank, Mizuho Financial Group, Isetan Mitsukoshi Holdings, North Pacific Bank, The Gunma Bank, The Fukui Bank, The Shiga Bank, Mitsubishi UFJ capital, Fenox, Dentsu Digital, GMO Venture Partners and others.

Major shareholders include co-founder and CEO Yosuke Tsuji (19.95%), board member Chihiro Asano (9.47%), CISO Takashi Ichikawa (6.60%),1%), and the company board member Toshio Taki (3.36%).

Tsuji started his career at the Sony Corporation in a finance role and also worked at Monex Securities – one of Japan’s largest online brokerage firms – in a marketing and business development role.

According to the consolidated statement as of November 2016, the company posted a revenue of JPY 1.54 billion yen, with an ordinary loss of JPY 882.6 million yen and a net loss of JPY 890 million yen.

It claims to have 5 million users for its PFM business, with the service linked to more than 2600 financial institutions (FIs), while its SaaS enterprises business has in excess of 500,000 users with more than 3600 FIs linked to the service.

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