Leveraging early stage Australian technology companies into the Japanese market
Australia is experiencing a surge in high tech and tech value creation as exemplified by burgeoning Australian unicorns like Canva, Atlassian, Airwallex and Judo Capital. As of January 2020, Australia has $2-2.5Bn available in venture capital funds under management to develop quality, high growth companies. Critically, Australia has an affordable talent pool and realistic deal pricing – a healthy contrast with other global venture investing hot spots.
Japan’s outbound M&A and investment in open innovation is at an all time high. This reflects its desire to combat secular economic headwinds, with corporate Japan looking abroad for new technologies and product ideas to complement existing (and create new) revenue lines. Japan also has global distribution networks and supply chains seeking ways to improve performance.
InterValley is a geographically focussed VC fund established to take advantage of both these trends. The fund leverages high quality, scalable, early stage Australian technology companies into the Japanese market, complementing the strategic direction of an increasing number of Japanese corporates at precisely the right time.
Japan has traditionally been viewed as a difficult market to penetrate for Australian companies. InterValley’s cornerstone investor, Mizuho Securities (managed by New Frontier Capital Management), uniquely provides the firm with privileged access to the client base of its parent company, Mizuho Financial Group, which has deep relationships with more than 70% of corporate Japan. InterValley will leverage these relationships for the benefit of the Group’s corporate clients and InterValley Limited Partners. This positions InterValley as a co-investor of choice for the best VCs in Australia for portfolio assets relevant to Japan.
At the end of 2019, InterValley successfully announced its first closing. The fund is now active in the market, with a focus on securing further financial and strategic investors in the fund with a target of AUD$200m.
Kepler Analytics - Melbourne
AI platform for brick-and-mortar retail managers that collects and analyses customer behaviour data to recommend actions that effectively grow sales.
Retail Sensors A Game Changer – Herald Sun
Kepler Analytics – Channel 9
Why we like them
Kepler’s in-store sensors help retailers to better understand and optimise how customers experience their store environment, providing a digital interface to the physical retail environment and enabling better data-driven decision-making capabilities across a range of business areas. InterValley will actively assist their global expansion with focus on Japan.
Global Team Members
General Partner/Founder, CEO
Jun Hosoya has more than 30 years of investment management experience across Japan and the USA, including 46 venture investments. His many successful exits include 8 IPO’s, 6 M&A transactions and 3 trade sales.
Jun was the founding member and Managing Director of INCJ (Innovation Network Corporation) in 2009, a Japanese VC fund with an AUM of USD 20 billion. At INCJ Jun was responsible for investment and management of early stage innovation companies. Jun also launched the Life Science IP Fund and MedVenture Partners, an incubation fund for medical devices.
Prior to INCJ, Jun was a Partner for Apax Globis, a VC fund in Tokyo, where he led the Technology Investment Team. Prior to that Jun was International Portfolio Manager for NED, responsible for managing investments in Silicon Valley.
Jun has served as COO and has been a board director for numerous portfolio companies in early stage, pre-IPO and post-IPO stages. Jun is currently the Charter Member of TiE Japan.
MBA, University of Chicago; BA, Rikkyo University
General Partner, Representative of New Frontier Capital Management
Shigeki is CEO of NFCM Hong Kong and Executive Vice President of NFCM, with extensive experience as an Investment Committee member and representative of New Frontier Capital Management of various global funds including Cybernaut New Frontier Venture Fund (China VC), CMH Growth Fund (China PE) and Tata Capital Growth Fund I & II (India PE).
Shigeki previously served as Head of Investment Department at Mizuho Securities for 7 years and was responsible for the Private Equity fund business of Mizuho Securities. He has worked in the Tokyo and New York offices of the Mizuho group and has approximately 20 years of experience in Corporate Finance, Cross-border M&A, Capital Markets and PE Fund Management.
Shigeki was also Head of Fund working Group at the Investment Banking Unit of Mizuho Financial Group., and has been the CEO of NFCM Hong Kong and Executive Vice President of NFCM since 2015.
BA in Economics, University of Tokyo.
Asia Pacific & Europe
From the UK, Simon Wright has extensive experience within entrepreneurial environments. For nearly 20 years he held CEO and CFO positions within the Virgin Group working closely with Sir Richard Branson.
As well as working alongside many entrepreneurs, Simon also brings extensive deal experience having directly managed exits over USD$1bn in value with Virgin. Since then Simon has worked with some of the largest Private Equity firms in the Europe and the USA, most recently working with Bridgepoint Capital.
Simon was responsible for the Virgin Group's operations in Japan over a 10 year period including successfully managing the launch of two start up businesses.
Simon has deep experience in starting, growing and exiting businesses in all parts of the world, and worked on boards across a range of sectors, affording him perspective on requirements to successfully globalise businesses.
Simon is based in Melbourne, Australia.
Sheffield Business School, Finance; Chartered Institute (ACMA); GAICD
Japan & Australia
Yasu Kuroda has more than 15 years experience in venture investment and venture incubation. His portfolio includes 10 high-tech ventures. Yasu’s successful exits include 1 IPO and 4 M&A’s, with other investments still running. He was previously Deputy General Manager of Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Venture Capital, a USD 200 million VC.
Yasu has a strong background in leadership development, coaching, and organizational development, which he now brings to his role as an investor. He has served as board director for numerous early stage companies. Leveraging his HR skills, Yasu has engaged in value-add and turnaround strategies for various portfolio companies. He was instrumental in core hires & building the management team of the company that has already gone to IPO.
Being married to an Australian, Yasu has a solid network within Australia’s innovation ecosystem including with Austrade, local VC’s and as a member of the expert network for the government scheme ‘Accelerating Commercialisation’.
MBA, University of Pennsylvania; BA, Keio University
Chair of Investment Committee
Doron was the founding CEO of Commercialisation Australia (Federal Government) and subsequently the founding Director of the Entrepreneurs Programme. In these roles he contributed to supporting over 500 seed to early stage ventures by investing over $350m and building a unique government-led ecosystem. His continuous involvement in the program spanned seven years, from conception to maturity. He is highly regarded in Australia and beyond.
Prior to these positions, Doron spent 20 years as a venture capitalist and serial entrepreneur, having co-founded 6 technology companies and invested-in and/or managed several others.
For the last 5 years, Doron was the Vice President (Enterprise) at the University of Melbourne, where he co-founded BioCurate Pty Ltd, was Chairman of University of Melbourne Commercial Ltd, and represented the University on the Board of the NASDAQ Entrepreneurial Center in San Francisco, California.
Doron is Chair of InterValley’s Investment Committee.
BSc, Monash University; BEng (Hons), Monash University, GAICD
* “Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance”.
Professor Toby Walsh
Toby Walsh is Scientia Professor of Artificial Intelligence at the University of New South Wales, research group leader at Data61, guest Professor at Technical University of Berlin, external Professor of the Department of Information Science at Uppsala University and an honorary fellow of the School of Informatics at Edinburgh University. He is a fellow of the Australian Academy of Science, the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence and the European Coordinating Committee for AI
Professor Fabio Ramos
Fabio Ramos is an Professor in machine learning and robotics at the School of Information Technologies, and co-director of the Centre for Translational Data Science at the University of Sydney. He has over 130 peer-reviewed publications and received numerous best paper awards. His research focuses on statistical machine learning techniques for large-scale data fusion with applications in robotics, mining, environmental monitoring and healthcare
John Lee, M.D.
John Tsung-Chun Lee, M.D. is a Taiwanese physician scientist turned entrepreneur in medical technologies, trained in Taiwan (NTU), Japan (Keio), and US (Stanford/Silicon Valley). John teaches Medtech, Biodesign & entrepreneurship at major Taiwanese universities.
FIEA Article 63:
本ファンドは金融商品取引法第63条に基づく「適格機関投資家等特例業務」に関する特例の適用を受けています。適格機関投資家等特例業務に関する公衆縦覧【法第63条第６項】はこちらのリンクからご覧頂けます。Form 20-2 [Japan]
For Investors in Japan:
InterValley Ventures Pty Ltd has filed the Notification for Specially Permitted Businesses for Qualified Institutional Investors, etc. (SPBQII) to the Financial Services Agency of Japan pursuant to Article 63 of the Financial Instruments and Exchange Act (FIEA). Public Inspection Regarding Specially Permitted Businesses for Qualified Institutional Investors, etc. [FIEA Article 63(6)] is available at the following link: Form 20-2 [Japan]
Important Information: This material was created by InterValley Ventures Pty Ltd ACN 620 419 123 (General Partner). InterValley Ventures Pty Ltd is a Corporate Authorised Representative (CAR: 1265243 of Affirmative Financial Services Pty Ltd who holds an Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL: 331840). This material is for information purposes only and should not be construed as an offer or solicitation or recommendation to buy or sell any financial products. The information in this presentation or communication is directed and available to residents of Australia only deemed to be Wholesale Clients under Section 761G of the Corporations Act of 2001. This material is neither a prospectus nor a disclosure document under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) (Act), nor is it required to be. A copy is not required to be, and has not been, lodged with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission. This material has been prepared only for issue to and use by prospective investors who qualify as Wholesale Investors as defined in the Act (Wholesale Investors) and is not intended to be received or read by anyone other than a Wholesale Investor. An interest in AI^Human, LP (Fund) will only be issued to investors that are Wholesale Investors.
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Investment risk warning: Investment in the Fund involves a high level of risk and is not suitable for investors who are unable to sustain the loss of all or part of the sum invested, or who require predictable levels of return or liquidity. Section 6 of the separate InterValley AI/HUMAN, LP Information Memorandum sets out additional risks of an investment in the Fund. Potential investors should assess their own appetite for such risks independently and consult their own advisors before making a decision to invest in the Fund. Investment in the Fund should be regarded as speculative and is subject to the conflicts of interest described in the separate Information Memorandum. Investments should be considered only by wholesale investors.