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Orange raises $19M in pre-series A to boost localization effort of Japanese manga titles

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Tokyo-based Orange, the Japanese startup behind an AI localization system for manga titles, announced on April 7 that it has raised 2.92 billion yen (about $18.9 million) in a pre-series A round. This round was led by Globis Capital Partners (GCP) with participation from Japanese manga publisher Shogakukan, ANRI, SBI Investment, JIC Venture Growth Investments (JIC-VGI), Miyako Capital, Chiba Dojo Fund, Mizuho Capital, and Mitsubishi UFJ Capital, and GFR Fund. This follows Orange’s previous 250 million yen funding back in July of 2023. Of the investors participating in this round, GCP and Chiba Dojo Fund followed their previous investment. The latest round brought the company’s funding sum up to approximately 3.17 billion yen (about $20.5 million). The company intends to use the funds to expand the scale of its manga translation business and to spread Japanese manga globally. Orange was founded in April of 2021 by Shoko Ugaki. Prior to launching the company, he was managing smash-hit game titles at Japanese gaming company Colopl (TSE:3668), such as Wizard and Black Cat Wiz and White Cat Project. The company turns untranslated manga titles into English using a proprietary localization support tool. With this latest funding, the company aims to increase its…

Image credit: Orange

Tokyo-based Orange, the Japanese startup behind an AI localization system for manga titles, announced on April 7 that it has raised 2.92 billion yen (about $18.9 million) in a pre-series A round. This round was led by Globis Capital Partners (GCP) with participation from Japanese manga publisher Shogakukan, ANRI, SBI Investment, JIC Venture Growth Investments (JIC-VGI), Miyako Capital, Chiba Dojo Fund, Mizuho Capital, and Mitsubishi UFJ Capital, and GFR Fund.

This follows Orange’s previous 250 million yen funding back in July of 2023. Of the investors participating in this round, GCP and Chiba Dojo Fund followed their previous investment. The latest round brought the company’s funding sum up to approximately 3.17 billion yen (about $20.5 million). The company intends to use the funds to expand the scale of its manga translation business and to spread Japanese manga globally.

Orange was founded in April of 2021 by Shoko Ugaki. Prior to launching the company, he was managing smash-hit game titles at Japanese gaming company Colopl (TSE:3668), such as Wizard and Black Cat Wiz and White Cat Project. The company turns untranslated manga titles into English using a proprietary localization support tool. With this latest funding, the company aims to increase its current pace of English translations by five times to translate 500 books per month. The company also plans to launch an e-manga store called Emaqi in the U.S. to distribute translated titles this coming summer.

In this particular vertical, another Japanese startup Mantra has been offering a multilingual translation engine called Mantra Engine, related business services, and the Langaku English-learning app. Mantra has so far secured 230 million yen ($150 million) from Japanese manga publisher Shueisha, University of Tokyo’s Innovation Platform (UTokyo IPC), Deepcore, and other investors.

via PR Times

15 startups from Japan, Korea, and Taiwan join Orange Fab Asia’s latest accelerator batch

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See the original story in Japanese. Orange Fab Asia, the startup accelerator program in Asia headed by a French telco, unveiled startups joining an upcoming batch called Orange Fab Asia Spring 2015, the third batch for Tokyo and the second batch for Taipei and Seoul. As Orange Fab Asia covers Japan, Korea, and Taiwan, the program has selected five startups from each of these countries for a total of 15 teams. Tokyo Aquabit Spirals: IoT (Internet of Things) platform that connects things and spaces via the Internet Capy: Unauthorized log-in countermeasure solutions for corporate users (see also these articles) Fuller: Mobile device management app, usage analytics service for mobile apps (see also these articles) Nain: Status sharing-based communication platform for smart watch users (see also these articles) Scentee: Scent-based communication using an aroma-spraying device attached to smartphones Taipei Absolute Tech: 3G/Wi-Fi signal amplifying solution Docceo: the next-gen solution for hotels Jrsys International: QR code-based payments system PowerWow Tech: Wireless power supply solution Staging Design: Augmented reality technologies for interior decorations Seoul Dot: Braille-based smartwatch for the visually impaired Frasen: Sleep mask and sleep meliorating service MtoV: Smart driving service using big data Neofect: Smart rehabilitation system Pied-Piper: Smart mini garden…

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Regional demo day event at Center for Creative Economy and Innovation in Gyongi, Korea (25 March, 2015)

See the original story in Japanese.

Orange Fab Asia, the startup accelerator program in Asia headed by a French telco, unveiled startups joining an upcoming batch called Orange Fab Asia Spring 2015, the third batch for Tokyo and the second batch for Taipei and Seoul. As Orange Fab Asia covers Japan, Korea, and Taiwan, the program has selected five startups from each of these countries for a total of 15 teams.

Tokyo

  • Aquabit Spirals: IoT (Internet of Things) platform that connects things and spaces via the Internet
  • Capy: Unauthorized log-in countermeasure solutions for corporate users (see also these articles)
  • Fuller: Mobile device management app, usage analytics service for mobile apps (see also these articles)
  • Nain: Status sharing-based communication platform for smart watch users (see also these articles)
  • Scentee: Scent-based communication using an aroma-spraying device attached to smartphones

Taipei

  • Absolute Tech: 3G/Wi-Fi signal amplifying solution
  • Docceo: the next-gen solution for hotels
  • Jrsys International: QR code-based payments system
  • PowerWow Tech: Wireless power supply solution
  • Staging Design: Augmented reality technologies for interior decorations

Seoul

  • Dot: Braille-based smartwatch for the visually impaired
  • Frasen: Sleep mask and sleep meliorating service
  • MtoV: Smart driving service using big data
  • Neofect: Smart rehabilitation system
  • Pied-Piper: Smart mini garden

These startups will have a three-month mentorship and the possibility to explore business collaboration with Orange group. At the end of this batch (scheduled in July), they will present their achievements in intensive development efforts to an audience at demo-day events in Tokyo and Paris.

Meanwhile, the accelerator showcased the teams born out of the previous batch at a demo day event in Tokyo last November, followed by the program’s regional briefing events at Center for Creative Economy and Innovation in Gyongi, Korea in late March as well as the Innosquare incubation center in New Taipei City, Taiwan in early April. Check out graduated and participating teams on the Orange Fab Asia Facebook page.

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Regional demo day event at Innosquare, New Taipei City, Taiwan 8 April, 2015)

Edited by Kurt Hanson

8 Japanese startups join Orange’s new accelerator program

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Photo by Orange Labs Tokyo See the original article in Japanese Last November, we reported that the Japanese edition that France’s major telecommunications corporation Orange would launch a startup accelerator program in Tokyo. Dubbed Orange Fab, its first batch of participating startups was announced on February 12th. The eight startups below were selected out of a group of 50: Abeja: IT solution for stores that uses video recognition technology Jin-Magic: Internet traffic optimization technology. livepass: Push-ads platform Locarise: Analytics service for retail stores (Related) Mushroom: Telecommunications device for touch-screen devices NetLED: Network LED control system pigmal: Push button interface for smartphones (Related) sMedio: Screen-sharing service for smart devices These startups will have a three-month mentorship and the possibility to explore business collaboration with Orange group in the future. The batch is officially named “Orange Fab Asia 1st Season”. I asked Hiroshi Nishikawa, the partnership manager of Orange Labs Tokyo, why the name specifies Asia instead of Tokyo or Japan: The startups for this first batch are all Japanese startups. However, we plan to expand the program to the other Asian countries, so we called it Orange Fab Asia. Orange Labs Tokyo spans other Asian countries too, so in the future,…

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Photo by Orange Labs Tokyo

See the original article in Japanese

Last November, we reported that the Japanese edition that France’s major telecommunications corporation Orange would launch a startup accelerator program in Tokyo. Dubbed Orange Fab, its first batch of participating startups was announced on February 12th.

The eight startups below were selected out of a group of 50:

  • Abeja: IT solution for stores that uses video recognition technology
  • Jin-Magic: Internet traffic optimization technology.
  • livepass: Push-ads platform
  • Locarise: Analytics service for retail stores (Related)
  • Mushroom: Telecommunications device for touch-screen devices
  • NetLED: Network LED control system
  • pigmal: Push button interface for smartphones (Related)
  • sMedio: Screen-sharing service for smart devices

These startups will have a three-month mentorship and the possibility to explore business collaboration with Orange group in the future. The batch is officially named “Orange Fab Asia 1st Season”.

I asked Hiroshi Nishikawa, the partnership manager of Orange Labs Tokyo, why the name specifies Asia instead of Tokyo or Japan:

hiroshi-nishikawa_portraitThe startups for this first batch are all Japanese startups. However, we plan to expand the program to the other Asian countries, so we called it Orange Fab Asia. Orange Labs Tokyo spans other Asian countries too, so in the future, we’d like to call on startups in countries like Korea and Taiwan to join the program.

While we have previously reported on the startup scene in Paris (for our Japanese edition), Japanese startups have little relatively little presence in Europe. Perhaps Orange Fab Asia can help Japanese startups establish more of a footprint in Europe.

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