Japanese tech giant GMO just paid $6.8M for ‘Z.com.’ Here’s why.

GMO Internet is a classic case of a wildly successful Japanese tech company largely unknown outside the island nation. The online infrastructure company is essentially a one-stop shop for establishing an online presence. Enjoying a market cap of over US$1 billion has made GMO Internet one of the top dogs in Japan’s tech scene but the firm is largely absent from the world stage. Even its strongest overseas acquisition, the security firm GlobalSign, arguably has a stronger individual brand than its powerful parent.


Blocked messaging app Line looks for comeback in China

Months after its messaging app was blocked in China, the company behind Line is “optimistic” it can bring the service back to the country in the near future, in spite of the government’s growing censorship of the Internet. “We are very optimistic about reopening our service,” said Shin Jungho, CEO of Line Plus on Wednesday. “I cannot open today. I just want to say in the near future, I think we can open our service again.” Shin made the comments on the sidelines of the World Internet Conference in Wuzhen, China, where the nation’s government has gathered tech executives from across the globe.


Japan-based Murata sees potential in IoT and wearable industries

Japan-based component maker Murata Manufacturing has showcased its latest wearable devices at China Hi Tech Fair Elexcon 2014 and is planning to release one stop solutions to assist its clients to enter related markets. Commenting on the wearable and Internet of Things (IoT) industries, the company believes that both are still growing and have strong potential in the future.


Fujitsu servers get DataCore certified

DataCore Software has given certification to Fujitsu Primergy BX and CX servers. The software-defined storage and virtual storage area network (SAN) solutions have doubled in scale and performance according to DataCore. The products are aimed at the mid-market. Particularly, organisations running Microsoft virtualisation projects and mixed Hyper-V and VMware environments running business critical applications like Microsoft Dynamics ERP, SQL databases, SharePoint, Exchange, SAP, Oracle and VDI.


GMO GlobalSign Joins Kantara Initiative as Internet of Everything (IoE) Demands Trusted Identities

GMO GlobalSign, the security division of Tokyo-based GMO Internet Group and a leading provider of identity services for online transactions, announced it has joined the Kantara Initiative, a business acceleration group and independent non-profit organization addressing the need for digital identity solutions to support and simplify consumers’ connected lives. A program of the IEEE Industry Standards and Technology Organization (IEEE-ISTO), the Kantara Initiative works to address the most significant technical and policy interoperability challenges facing the computing industry, including those presented by the Internet of Everything (IoE) and the estimated 50 billion “things” that will be connected to the Internet by 2020(1).


US follows Asia Pacific’s lead in developing earthquake warning apps

California has this month seen the arrival of two new earthquake early warning systems, but how do they compare to what’s available in Asia Pacific? FutureGov has rounded up the leading regional apps and platforms, and compared them to the latest thing from Silicon Valley. The two California systems are a work in progress, and represent a partnership between the US Government and commercial providers, namely startups and the large GIS firm Esri.


Why Japanese web design is NOT so different

Kazumichi “Mario” Sakata is a user experience architect at Concent, Inc., a design strategy firm based in Tokyo. It is engaged as a leading enterprise information architecture and service design strategy firm for various national clients. Mario is also the translator of the award winning book “Lean UX” published by O’Reilly. This post originally appeared on his Medium and has been modified slightly for style.


International Law Specialist to Deploy NTT Enterprise Cloud to Enable Global Law Content Delivery

NTT Communications, (NTT Com), the ICT solutions and international communications provider within the NTT Group (NYSE: NTT), has announced a new global agreement with international law firm King & Wood Mallesons. The deal will see King & Wood Mallesons deploy NTT Com’s innovative, seamless and self-manageable cloud solution, Enterprise Cloud, throughout the company’s newly-expanded worldwide network for website hosting and providing a law content portal on a global scale.


Equinix to Build Fifth Tokyo Data Center

Equinix is building its fifth Tokyo data center roughly a year after it built the fourth one there. The $43 million data center will be about 55,000 square feet, providing total capacity of 725 cabinets in two phases. The first phase will provide 350 cabinets and is schedule to open in the first quarter of 2016. The data center is in response to strong demand from financial services, cloud, and content providers for interconnection services in Tokyo.


Colt Acquires KVH in Asia Pacific Expansion

U.K.-based Colt Group announced intent to acquire Japan’s KVH for €130.3 million (about $162 million). KVH expands Colt’s capabilities in key Asian markets and its ability to serve multi-national customers overall. The transaction is subject to shareholder approval. The two companies have complementary businesses with similar technology, platforms, business models, and product sets. Both KVH and Colt are owned by Fidelity Investments, which bailed Colt out in 2001 when the telecom bubble burst.


Korean mobile game maker 4:33 Creative Lab attracts big investment from Tencent and Line

Korean mobile game designer 4:33 Creative Lab has attracted fresh investment from Tencent and Line Corp, according to BeSUCCESS. The dollar amount was undisclosed, but BeSUCCESS puts the figure north of US$100 million. Tencent, Line, and Korea Investment Partners jointly set up a consortium in which Tencent contributed about US$110 million, according to Business Korea. After the investment made through the consortium, Tencent’s stake in 4:33 Creative Lab comes out to 25 percent. 4:33 Creative Labs says it will disclose more details about the consortium later this year.


Sorry China, the US and Southeast Asia agree that Japan is most important partner in the region

Startups, take notice. Singapore and Hong Kong might be great hubs for entrepreneurs and investors, Indonesia’s future earning potential might be incredibly appealing, and China’s vast economy might be enough to power your startup for years, but Japan now holds the title of most important partner in the region according to both ASEAN nations and the United States.


Japan’s NEC rolls out counterfeit spotting technology

TOKYO: Japan’s NEC on Monday (Nov 10) unveiled a technology that sniffs out even the most convincing counterfeits by reading microscopic patterns on everything from a luxury purse to a metal bolt. The technology can be also be used to trace the origin of mass-produced offerings by reading so-called “object fingerprints”, or three-dimensional surface irregularities, the firm said.


Evernote nets $20M in partnership agreement with Japan’s Nikkei

Professional and personal lifehacking service Evernote and Japanese media corporation Nikkei Keizai Shimbun (“Nikkei”) announced a working partnership today that features a US$20 million capital investment by Nikkei into the American firm. The agreement means that Nikkei’s digital news services will be integrated into the Evernote platform from 2015. Japanese (paying) users of both services can look forward to more easily using Nikkei articles for completing work tasks. Nikkei articles will be automatically stored in Evernote so relevant articles will be suggested for further reference when users make business documents.


Scott McNealy gives billion-dollar advice to Japanese startups

Last week, at a closed meeting in Tokyo, Sun Microsystems co-founder and Silicon Valley billionaire Scott McNealy offered advice to a group of Itochu Technology Ventures’ portfolio startups. The CEOs from Whill, Crowdworks, Raksul, Tokyo Otaku Mode, Uzabase, and Fringe81 were all in attendance. Tech in Asia was invited to listen in on the discussion and engage McNealy regarding his impressions of entrepreneurship in both Tokyo and Asia as a whole.


Gumi tries to break the Japanese gaming curse, opens up shop in Canada

Gumi keeps on rolling following its resurrection from the game developer scrap heap. After teasing that its imminent IPO could hit upwards of US$300 million in value and securing a cool US$10 million and critical partnership from Line, Gumi is now making good on its promise to make a stir in North America with the opening of a subsidiary in Vancouver, British Columbia. The aptly-named Gumi Canada will need to solve a puzzle that has plagued Japanese game developers for years – how to make first party mobile games for North American


VMware extends cloud play to Australia and Japan

The fight to win over business customers in the Asia-Pacific cloud market is set to become fiercer with vCloud Air’s foray into Australia and Japan. Earlier this week, virtualisation software company VMware said it has teamed up with Telstra to offer the vCloud Air public cloud service in Australia by the first half of next year. vCloud Air, currently available in the United States, United Kingdom and Germany, lets businesses extend their existing VMware virtual machines (VMs) to the public cloud in a hybrid cloud setting, or spin up new VMs directly in the cloud.


Ahead of 2020 Tokyo Olympics, NTT Docomo to offer translation app for 10 languages

Planning on heading to Japan for the 2020 Tokyo summer Olympics but worried about the language barrier? Fret not, as the country’s largest mobile carrier today announced that it will release a spoken translation app to ensure smooth communication with the locals. NTT Docomo will offer its Jspeak app starting November 10, currently exclusive to the Google Play store – and not locked down to Docomo subscribers only. As long as you’ve got an Android-powered smartphone or tablet (running 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich or later), you’ll have access to the paid service, which will be available for US$.99 a day or US$2.99 per week.


Indonesian edtech startup HarukaEdu raises series A funding from CyberAgent Ventures

HarukaEdu, an Indonesian startup focused on online education, announced a series A investment of an undisclosed amount from Japan-based CyberAgent Ventures earlier today. The company released a statement saying that the new funds will be used to recruit team members necessary for the development of HarukaEdu’s infrastructure, featured courses, and online training.


IIJ and Biznet to Run a Joint Cloud Venture in Indonesia

TOKYO, Nov. 6, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Internet Initiative Japan Inc. (IIJ) (Nasdaq:IIJI) (TSE:3774), one of Japan’s leading Internet access and comprehensive network solutions providers, today announced that it has reached an agreement with Biznet Networks (Biznet) to establish a joint venture in Indonesia. IIJ aims to enhance its existing cloud services in the ASEAN region. Biznet Networks (Indonesian name: PT. Supra Primatama Nusantara), headquartered in Jakarta, is a major communications services company in Indonesia.