Kaylene Hong was Asia Reporter for The Next Web between 2013 and 2014, based in Singapore. She is bilingual in English and Mandarin. Stay in Kaylene Hong was Asia Reporter for The Next Web between 2013 and 2014, based in Singapore. She is bilingual in English and Mandarin. Stay in touch via Twitter or Google+.
Following the appointment of a 30-year-old CEO last week, Japan’s social networking site Mixi, the local rival of Facebook in the country, has continued efforts to freshen up its image by investing in two local startups.
Mixi disclosed its investments in CloudStudy and Reventive at a financial results briefing by incoming CEO Yusuke Asakura, according to a report on Startup-Dating.
The Japanese firm will plough 72 million yen ($700,000) into CloudStudy, accounting for 20% of its total funding to date. CloudStudy’s main offering is a social learning management platform called StudyPlus, which allows users to log their study hours and content and to share the progress with other users if they want to.
Mixi didn’t reveal its investment figure for Reventive, but it was somewhere in the tens of millions of yen, Startup-Dating said. Retentive’s main offering is a Path-like app called Close, which caps the number of friends to nine people and aims at allowing users to connect only to the most important people in their lives. The startup has other investors including Sunbridge Global Ventures and some angel investors, making up a total investment of 70 million yen.
Mixi is struggling to revamp its image, taking steps to inject more youth and appeal, as it has seen a continued decline in Japan. Last September, Facebook overtook Mixi as it hit 15 million monthly active users in the country – a significant moment since Japan had been one of the few remaining markets where Facebook was not the dominant network.
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