"Paronym" Japanese startup raises Series B funding for next generation video technology "TIG" and expansion to Thailand and SEA market

Technology News Tuesday October 27, 2020 10:57 —PRESS RELEASE LOCAL

Paronym Inc. (Headquarters: Minato-ku, Tokyo; CEO: Michio Kobayashi, hereinafter Paronym), which develops and provides the interactive video solution "TIG", has successfully closed Series B funding with the confirmation of investment from InVent, the corporate venture capital arm of Intouch Holdings PLC. (Head office: Bangkok, Thailand, hereinafter called INTOUCH). INTOUCH is a holding company with investments in the telecom, media, and technology (TMT) sector including digital businesses and is known as the parent company of Advanced Info Services PLC. (AIS) and Thaicom PLC.

Paronym closed Series B round bringing its total funding to US$ 6.5 million led by Japan Post Capital Co., Ltd. and NTT DOCOMO Ventures, Inc. and has now concluded the new investment with INTOUCH.

"TIG", developed and provided by Paronym, is the next-generation interactive video technology that can tag information onto the objects in the video so that users can retrieve beyond superficial information. With a clean user experience that does not intrude the video and allows viewers to intuitively understand which interest can be touched to engage richer information, TIG provides a seamless user experience and is the future of video.

Dr. Narongpon Boonsongpaisan, Head of InVent by Intouch Holdings PLC., shared, "Paronym?s technology is the revolutions of video technology. 'TIG? is a platform to enable the interactive video technology to the e-commerce sites. With TIG media, it is easy to use yet powerful tools for brands that automatically convert the engagement into transactions. Their applications are limitless which can be applied to various segments from e-commerce, advertising, training, game to healthcare. In a response to the coming of 5G technology, it will enhance and bring the possibilities with faster connection and connectivity which helps to unleash the full potential of Paronym?s technology to another level of services."

"InVent is exploring to invest in promising startups that are related to business trends aligned with 5G-related and emerging technology. Our investments are not limited only in Thailand, but we expand our footprint to SEA and other countries including Japan as well to bring the best technology to Intouch Group."

"We are excited to welcome 'Paronym' as our first Japanese startup to InVent. It showed that Paronym can help many brands to gain higher conversion rate than other types of social media. We see this potential as the future for digital ads to create new enriched experiences to customers and generate more opportunities for SMEs and Corporates in Thailand, Japan and SEA in the future."

Michio Kobayashi, CEO of Paronym Inc. says, "This is the first case of a direct investment to a Japanese company from Intouch. In particular, with the Corona Crisis, considering that the investment from businesses to startups is stagnating worldwide, I think that it will be a big message for others that we can start off in anticipation of the "New Normal ? TIG" after the paradigm shift."

"We aim to provide innovative services in the video market in Thailand in the future. In Thailand, which is the largest digitally advanced nation in Southeast Asia, has an e-commerce penetration rate (EC rate) of over 40% while the e-commerce markets is also predicted to increase from $900 million in 2015 to $13 billion in 2024. With the new capital investment and the strategic collaborations, Paronym will accelerate to expand market to SEA especially in Thai market to bring the best technology that Paronym has been developing in Japan, at the same time, we?d like to bring back new achievements in Thailand to Japan. Therefore, we are looking forward to building a strong partnership with INTOUCH and AIS to create the new sensation in the video market. We aim to first enhance our presence in Thailand and eventually establish it as a service that is socially implemented in Southeast Asia."

Under such circumstances, it is predicted that further acceleration of digital transformation using video will be possible. Recently TIG has become available for use in signages, LINE, and live streaming, and is evolving further to meet the demands of the rapidly changing market adjusting to the 'New Normal? in the COVID pandemic. TIG services can be used in various fields such as tourism and education as well as advertisement and product sales and can provide the optimal solution for each purpose. Paronym aims to expand the lineup of TIG services to meet the wide range demands of the Japanese market and aims for the same development for overseas markets. It will further accelerate its R&D and sales activities in anticipation of the transformation of the video market due to the arrival of the 5G era.

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