Although the news was inconspicuous at the time in Japan, it was indeed remarkable that Airbus Ventures participated as a lead investor in the $7.3 million Series A round for Infostellar, a Tokyo-based satellite antenna sharing platform in September 2017. The financing was substantially the first lead investment by a venture capital arm of a prestigious European multinational corporation in the Japanese startup history.
In addition to Infostellar, Airbus Ventures participated in the $11 million Series A round for Trillium Secure, a presently Sunnyvale-headquartered cyber security technology startup originally established in Tokyo. The financing lead by JAFCO Japan, one of the largest VC firms in the country, in July 2018 is another funding round which involved a venture capital arm of an eminent European MNC, Deutsche Bahn Digital Ventures this time.
The recent two investments above imply a newly emerging omen that European capital has gradually started to go towards Japan. However, contrary to the large market sizes of and trading volumes between Europe and Japan, both a number and amount of bilateral investments are still small for the time being. Major reasons behind this limited interaction are considered to be the low visibility of Japanese startups and a lack of necessary information for investment examination in Europe. Therefore, this article principally aims at introducing the latest ecosystem and rising deep tech startups in Japan to MNCs and VC firms in Europe.