cluster, Inc., which operates one of the largest metaverse platforms in Japan, " cluster ", with a total event attendance of over 20 million people, has raised 5.2 billion yen in Series D first and second closing financing. Sparks Asset Management, SBI Investment, Orix, and four other companies underwrote the financing.
Cluster Inc. raised 5.2 billion yen in funding.
Cluster Inc. operates one of the largest metaverse platforms in Japan, " cluster. It can connect thousands of people simultaneously and has hosted large-scale virtual events such as live music concerts and conferences. The company also handles events for corporate clients, with cumulative attendance topping 20 million in January 2023. With this funding, the company has announced that it will strengthen product development and marketing for further business expansion, including overseas expansion, the establishment of a subsidiary to develop services that enable corporate clients and creators to utilize "cluster", and entry into the education field.
List of Underwriters
Sparks Asset Management will be the lead investor in Series D. The underwriters are as follows Cluster Inc. has raised 1.4 billion yen to date, bringing the total amount raised to 6.6 billion yen.
- Sparks Asset Management Co.
- SBI Investment Co.
- ORIX Corporation
- KDDI Open Innovation Fund No. 3
- Skyland Ventures
- Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank, Limited
- NOBUNAGA Capital Village Corporation
Naoto Kato, Representative Director, Cluster Corporation
We are very pleased that our investors have expressed their expectations for our vision of "creating the infrastructure for a virtual economic sphere. The digitalization of humankind is inevitable in order to combat epidemics, achieve carbon neutrality, and achieve a sustainable society, and the trend toward a metaverse will only accelerate in the future. Our metaverse platform, the largest of its kind in Japan, will greatly accelerate the conventional Internet. It has the potential not only for communication and entertainment in virtual space, but also for education, business, and even the creation of new industries. We will do our utmost to realize a world in which more people can benefit from the innovations this platform will bring in various fields. With this funding, we will strive for further growth through technology development, human resource recruitment, and global expansion. I would like to thank once again our investors who will be working alongside us, as well as our residents and corporate clients who support our efforts. In order to meet your expectations, we will continue to pursue the potential of Metaverse and strive to be a company that can contribute to the world.
Shuhei Abe, Representative Director, Sparks Asset Management Co.
Metaverse has potential for various applications, not only in entertainment but also in business scenes. I believe that Cluster, with its overwhelming track record in Japan, will maximize the potential of the Metaverse and deliver more attractive experiences to the world. We look forward to seeing Cluster take a great leap forward as the first Metaverse company from Japan in the future.
Satoru Kawamura, Deputy General Manager, Investment Department, SBI Investment Co.
Cluster is one of the largest metaverse platform companies in Japan with an "elite group of game and application engineers" and strengths in "original SDKs (content generation systems) and virtual space construction systems such as 3D rendering/optimization technology. The company is one of the largest metaverse platform companies in Japan. We invested in the company based on the assumption that it will provide a service that excels in content transmission capabilities, enabling users to experience a sense of immersion in various metaverse usage scenarios, such as smartphones and PCs, by taking advantage of its leading position as the world's largest provider of corporate metaverse events. By leveraging the SBI Group and its network of cooperating partners, we expect that Cluster's C-to-C services will be used by people around the world in the future.
Mr. Yutaka Kadowaki, Manager, Equity Solution Team 2, Domestic Business Promotion Department, ORIX Corporation
Cluster is a leading company in the Metaverse domain in Japan, and we regard them as an outstanding company in Japan based on their numerous achievements, especially in corporate events. While the Metaverse itself is already being used as a place for people to interact and community, we invested in the company in anticipation of future market expansion and the promotion of its use in various industries. With CEO Kato, who has the deepest understanding and knowledge of the Metaverse in Japan, and an experienced management team that is well versed in actual business, we expect that Cluster will lead the industry as a global Metaverse company in the future.
Kazuhiko Chuma, Deputy General Manager, Business Creation Division, KDDI Corporation
In the metaverse, which has been accelerated by the Corona Disaster, Cluster has grown to become synonymous with the metaverse. Considering their grand vision and potential, it is only now that they are coming into their own. I will continue to stand by and watch and support them until they become a global Metaverse company from Japan.
Mr. Yoshihiko Kinoshita, Skyland Ventures
Skyland Ventures is our fourth investment since the round in July 2015 when the cluster was established. In the early days, the cluster offered multi-user experiences such as VR x online games, and now in 2023, the cluster is offering communities in the digital space called the metaverse. We look forward to even greater growth over the next few years.
Mr. Takehiko Sakaue, Managing Executive Officer, Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank, Limited
The worldview is truly one of "imagination" and "creation. Through Cluster, I feel that the world of science fiction that we dreamed of in the past is now becoming a reality. If the human spirit can be freed from the physical body and live more freely, a different world will open up, and I believe that this will lead to solutions to various social issues. Based on the spirit of Japanese craftsmanship, I hope that you will take off on a great leap toward building an infrastructure for a virtual economic sphere that we can be proud to show the world. I send my hearty encouragement to this mass of possibilities.
Mr. Hiroyuki Kawano, Leader of Investment Department, NOBUNAGA Capital Village Co.
It has been about a year and a half since we first met with Cluster, during which time they spoke at our first anniversary event and we had discussions with Juroku Financial Group about co-creating a business, and we have now had the good fortune to invest in them. In addition to its overwhelming strength in virtual space construction systems, we find all of Cluster's services attractive, such as providing exciting new experiences to corporate and individual users, and we look forward to further progress in the future. Together, we will continue to propose new values and services to the community as we make full use of the resources of the Juroku Financial Group.
We look forward to seeing how Cluster Corporation will continue to develop in order to achieve its mission of "accelerating the creative power of humankind. For more information, please visit the official website of Cluster Inc.
— クラスター株式会社 (@cluster_corp) May 17, 2023