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Home » Funds Startups Co., Ltd. Funds Startups provides venture debt to deep tech startup Iris as its first project

Funds Startups Co., Ltd. Funds Startups provides venture debt to deep tech startup Iris as its first project

[Funds Startups Co., Ltd.] Funds Startups provides venture debt to deep tech startup Iris as its first project
*Funds Startups Co., Ltd.*
Press release: July 3, 2024
Funds Startups provides venture debt to deep tech startup Iris as its first project
Startups Co., Ltd. (Headquarters: Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Representative Director: Hirohiro Maekawa) is a company that develops artificial intelligence technology (AI) related medical devices for hospitals and doctors. Director: Okiyama
Funds Venture Debt Fund to Sho (hereinafter referred to as Iris Inc.) We would like to inform you that we have executed a venture debt of 400 million yen as of June 28th as the first project of the No. 1 Investment Business Limited Liability Partnership. *

Deep tech startups are a business field that conducts research and development and provides products and services to solve major social issues such as population problems and environmental problems. It takes a long time to grow, and a large amount of capital is required for equipment during that time, but due to the length of the path to commercialization and profitability, the problem is that there are a limited number of funding sources. there is. *

* The government’s “Five-Year Startup Plan*1” and the recently announced “Grand Design and Implementation Plan for New Capitalism” Deep tech startups are a focus area in the 2024 Revised Draft*2, and our fund has decided to make this investment because we want to contribute to the development of this field from a private
perspective. *

*1 *2

* ■Background of investment *
Based on the concept of joint research with financial institutions, this fund aims to directly face fields and companies that are difficult to supply funds with existing financial mechanisms and promote the provision of funds. We believe that this is an initiative that truly embodies the concept of our fund.

In Japan, the development of deep tech startups has been cited as one of the focus areas, and the promotion of public funding especially for the early stages of startups and the necessary environmental improvements are progressing rapidly. However, it is still difficult for the private sector to supply funds, and there are a limited number of financial institutions and investors who can respond. On the other hand, many of the late-stage deep tech startups that this fund invests in have made significant progress in the process of commercializing their technology, and in addition to the R&D costs associated with continued research and development, they are also unable to mass produce their products. In addition, growth costs for sales will be required, and a large amount of financing will be required.

We believe that by increasing the number of players who can invest risk money in this field, we will be able to strongly promote the industrialization and social implementation of Japan’s dormant technology in a true sense. We are confident that by creating flagship cases, we will be able to further promote funding for deep tech startups. With this significance in mind, we have decided to invest in Iris, a leading deep tech startup in Japan in the healthcare field.

* ■About Iris *
Iris was founded in 2017 with the mission of “Creating innovative medical care that everyone can co-create.” We have a large team of professionals, including representative Mr. Okiyama, who is an active doctor, medical professionals, people from government departments such as the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare and the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, data scientists specializing in the AI ​​medical field, and people from major medical device manufacturers. Utilizing deep learning technology (AI technology), we are developing AI medical devices that digitize the artisanal skills of doctors.

* ■Comments from each company regarding this matter ・Iris Co., Ltd. Representative Director/Doctor*
* Mr. Sho Okiyama *
Deep tech is said to face three hurdles: the Devil’s River (difficulty in developing technology), the Valley of Death (difficulty in commercialization), and the Darwin Sea (difficulty in
commercialization). Although it is clear that if realized, it would change society, deep tech is a frontier that remained unstarted by anyone in the past as a “dream technology” or “a dream technology that cannot be realized.”
With the mission of “Creating open medical care that can be co-created by everyone,” we are developing unprecedented medical technology and artificial intelligence technology, and are able to commercialize it through clinical trials and insurance coverage. I did.

However, each time AI is used in the field, data and knowledge are accumulated, and this must be connected to future development. Funds I am humbled to receive support from Startups at the timing of their fund launch. We hope to continue to realize our mission and advance the social implementation of future medical care.

* ・Shuhei Fujimoto, Advisor, Funds Startups Co., Ltd./Associate Professor, Shizuoka Graduate School of Social Health and Medicine *Funds
Venture Debt Fund
We are pleased to have invested in Iris Inc. as the first investment project of the No. 1 Investment Business Limited Liability
Partnership. We believe that Iris, along with its technology and strategy for developing innovative AI new medical devices, will become one of the world’s leading health tech companies and even deep tech companies. So-called deep tech is a world where capital inflows are based on a wide range of knowledge and risk prediction, such as detailed industry and technology analysis. The significance of increasing the possibility of investing in the deep tech field by working hand in hand with academia advisors specializing in the field like FVD Fund is, and we will continue to actively invest in this field. We look forward to it.
* ・Funds Startups Co., Ltd. Representative Director / Funds Venture Debt Fund Representative Partner*
* Hirohiro Maekawa *
We are very pleased to be able to invest in Iris, one of Japan’s leading deep tech startups, as our fund’s first investment. Iris has a mission of “Creating open medical care that everyone can co-create.” With a deep understanding and experience of the medical industry, high technical capabilities, and a well-balanced management team, Iris develops AI medical devices. I feel that this is a wonderful startup that can open up new fields and greatly advance the medical industry itself.
In addition, during the consideration process, we were able to conduct a business feasibility evaluation in collaboration with academia by borrowing the knowledge of our advisor, Mr. Fujimoto, which was one of the main factors that ultimately led us to make the investment. is. From now on, we will not only provide funding, but also utilize our relationships and resources to support the company’s growth as much as possible.

* ■About Funds Startups * Funds
Startups Co., Ltd. (Headquarters: Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Representative Director: Hirohiro Maekawa) has a mission of “developing a system that allows startups that create social impact to achieve the most ideal growth.” was established in December 2023 as a wholly owned subsidiary of. Funds
At Startups, Funds Venture Debt
As the Fund’s GP, we will mainly provide support for fund management and venture debt to financial institutions. In the future, while this business will be our core, we also plan to take on the role of an investment banking division specializing in startups, diversifying funding methods for startups and improving the environment.
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