Nudge Inc. Raises Additional Funding from Insignia Ventures Partners and Sony Innovation Fund


TOKYO, Nov. 18, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Nudge Inc., a next-generation credit-card provider and a future challenger bank in Japan, announced it has expanded its Pre-Series-A round with new funding from Insignia Ventures Partners and Sony Innovation Fund. The round was led by Spiral Capital and Headline Asia with participation from existing investor Genesia Ventures and founder Takashi Okita and brings the total amount raised to $10 million USD.

Founded in 2020, Nudge Inc. is on a mission to create the future of financial services through collective action. It aims to achieve financial inclusion in Japan by becoming a challenger bank through open innovation with its equity partners. It also advocates a "free," "fair," and "flat" organizational culture that constitutes its corporate philosophy.

Nudge Inc. launched its next-generation credit card service, "Nudge," in September 2021 after registering as a small-amount comprehensive credit purchase intermediator*. Nudge is a safe and secure credit card service that provides its customers with the unique ability to support their favorite sport teams, artists, or creators. With every purchase, a portion of the transaction fee goes to a participating team, artist, or creator. With a growing list of options, the varied list includes a mixed martial arts champion, local basketball teams, and a Japanese music diva – just to name a few. Nudge Inc. also provides a simple onboarding process on its app and flexible repayment.

With the successful launch of its credit card service, Nudge Inc. plans to further accelerate the expansion of the "Nudge" card service and its existing services as the company works towards becoming a challenger bank. In order to further develop its services, the company has also been aggressively recruiting new talent. Subject to shareholders' approval, Nudge Inc. will also appoint two new external board members before the end of 2021 to enhance the company's corporate governance as a responsible financial services provider.      

With the knowledge and experience of Insignia Ventures Partners and Sony Innovation Fund around the fan economy and challenger banks, Nudge Inc. is also developing plans to expand into other domains including NFTs, BaaS and future expansion to overseas markets.

Takashi Okita, CEO of Nudge Inc. said,
"I am very pleased to welcome our two new investors Insignia Ventures Partners and Sony Innovation Fund. With their partnership, we will leverage their networks' connections that help us accelerate the expansion of our business from the current credit card services to other types of products such as NFTs and expand to additional geographies. We look forward to partnering with all our investors as we continue to take an out-of-the-box approach to bring the future experience of financial services to consumers."

Tan Yinglan, Founding Managing Partner of Insignia Ventures Partners said,
"We've had the privilege of being early backers to some of the leading digital banks and neobanks in Southeast Asia, and now I'm excited to also be partnering with Takashi Okita-san and his team at Nudge as they build a challenger bank to reinvent financial services in Japan! Digital banking is still in its early days in Asia, and we've learned that a strong operator background and regulatory connections are key in a leader navigating the growth of a digital bank in this landscape. I've had the pleasure of knowing Okita-san for a long time and witnessing his stellar entrepreneurial career across Hong Kong and Tokyo, from the private to the public markets. We believe he has been able to leverage these strengths in experience and connections to bring Nudge to life, being one of the first companies to secure the new Japanese credit card license, and take the company even further as we enter the digital banking chapter of financial services in Asia."

Gen Tsuchikawa, Chief Investment Manager of Sony Innovation Fund said,
"Under an experienced management team, Nudge approaches issues the traditional financial industry faces head-on and provides a new value of customer-oriented experience through utilizing the fan community. We will continue to support the company's business growth in collaboration with many investors and partners."

(*) Small-amount comprehensive credit purchase intermediator:
In Japan, credit card issuers need to register to the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry for operating credit card services. The small-amount comprehensive credit purchase intermediator is a new license established in 2020 that requires a simpler registration process for new market entrants. Nudge Inc. can provide its customers with better user experience with this license and by utilizing digital technology.

About Nudge
Nudge Inc. is a Fintech company which aims to achieve financial inclusion in Japan by becoming a challenger bank. It sets its mission as to create the future of financial services through collective action. The company was founded in 2020 by Takashi Okita, a pioneer of Japan's FinTech scene and a serial entrepreneur. Takashi is the chairperson of FinTech Association of Japan and ex-CEO of SBI Ripple Asia.

Nudge Inc.
Founded on 12th February 2020
CEO: Takashi Okita
Address: Finolab (Otemachi building 4th floor), 1-6-1 Otemachi, Chiyoda-ward, Tokyo