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Our Mission Is To Help Build Japan’s Next Legendary Companies



Coral Capital is a venture capital firm focused on helping build Japan’s next legendary companies. In search of the new generation of Sonys and Toyotas, we invest across all stages and all industries, from SaaS all the way to fusion. We have invested in over 100 companies including SmartHR, KAKEHASHI, Kyoto Fusioneering, Kaminashi, Hacomono, Graffer, and GITAI. 

We launched our first fund in partnership with 500 Startups, a Silicon Valley based firm and one of the most active investors in the world. Given our Silicon Valley roots, we were the first to introduce many concepts in Japan, including convertible equity (J-KISS), and the startup market’s first SPV. Although we are no longer affiliated with 500 Startups, we still maintain a global network of investors, some of which are LPs in our funds. 

In addition to capital, we manage one of the most engaged communities of founders and startup employees in Japan. We also run the most widely read VC blog and the largest startup career fair in the country, both of which drive thousands of candidates to our portfolio companies to hire each year. 

We believe that the greatest companies are built by founders, not investors. The founders we invest in are exceptional without our help. Our job is to be their multiplier. We help them go faster and go bigger, while giving them the space to build their companies as they see fit. We are not “hands on” investors nor “hands off” investors. We are “hands-if” investors. As in, “call us IF you need us.” We are there when you need us, and out of your way when you don’t.


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  •  James Riney and Yohei Sawayama closed their first fund in partnership with 500 Startups in February 2016. They closed their second fund in February 2019 under their own brand, Coral Capital.
  • Investors include Mizuho Bank, Mitsubishi Estate, Shinsei Bank, J-Power, Pavilion Capital, GREE, Dai-ichi Insurance, Founders Fund, and undisclosed institutional investors in Japan and the US.
  • The partners have invested in over 100 companies.
  • We invest across all industries and all stages, from Seed to Series C and beyond.
  • In April 2016, the partners launched the J-KISS, a financing instrument that has quickly become the standard template for seed-stage companies in Japan.