Sony Corp is all set to venture into the startup world. The company announced on Wednesday about its plan to set up a new fund of around 20 billion yen ($185 million) with prospects to invest in tech start-ups. The company has teamed up with Daiwa Securities Group Inc, a Japanese corporation to raise the venture fund.
The two companies have established Innovation Growth Ventures Co. to help grow companies working primarily in the field of artificial intelligence, robotics and finance. Sony had previously launched a fund back in 2016. This project has been set up along with Daiwa Capital Holdings — the VC arm of investment bank Daiwa Securities — and early LPs confirmed include Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, Osaka Shoko Shinkin Bank and Mitsubishi UFJ Lease & Finance Company Limited.
Although the amount raise is uniformed about, the target hasn’t been reached as yet as per reports.
The funds set up by Sony previously had made over 40 investments. With IGF now taking over, their focus lies to write bigger checks than Sony could manage by itself.
Efforts will also be made to help it’s portfolio companies develop into public firms. The fund will also open links with research institutions as well as other startup companies in their path.
“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 of Daiwa Securities, in a statement.
The project is an expansion of Sony Innovation Fund that helped develop major companies back in July 2016.