– First Instance of SVF2 Investing in Japanese Medical AI Company –
AI Medical Service Inc. (hereinafter AIM), the Tokyo-based med-tech company using deep learning technology to develop endoscopic AI, has announced 8 billion JPY (US$70 million) of financing led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2 (SVF2) and joined by existing investors Globis Capital Partners, World Innovation Lab (WiL), and Incubate Fund. SoftBank Vision Fund is one of the largest technology investment funds in the world. It has invested $129 billion in the AI industry from the time of its inception until the end of 2021 (*). AIM will use the proceeds of the Series C financing round to accelerate the global adoption of endoscopic AI and finance the development of an in-house cloud-based platform.
Mission of AIM
Worldwide, approximately 30% of cancer mortality can be attributed to gastrointestinal (GI) cancer, the largest of any cancer grouping in the world as well as in Japan. Many cases of GI cancer can be treated successfully if they are detected at an early stage, but the prospects for recovery diminish substantially in the case of late-stage detection. Currently, only an endoscopic exam can detect GI cancer at its early stages. By increasing the accuracy of endoscopic diagnostics with AI, AIM is working to promote the early detection of cancer and save lives all over the world.
Positioning of Japanese Endoscopic Medicine
Japan is the origin of endoscopic medicine and leads the world in its development and practice. Due to this storied history, endoscopic data collected in Japan is the world’s best in terms of both quality and quantity. Consequently, endoscopic AI developed utilizing Japanese expertise has great potential to be victorious in the global market.
Collaboration with SoftBank Group
Through its collaboration with the SoftBank Group, AIM will promote the worldwide adoption of endoscopic AI, first created in Japan using the knowledge and experience of expert endoscopists. This endoscopic AI will first be distributed on-premises, but distribution will eventually transition to a cloud platform to be developed by AIM. Realizing the vision of cloud-based endoscopic AI will allow people around the world to access the latest endoscopic medicine, contributing to vastly reduced cancer mortality.
Image3: Global Expansion of Endoscopic AI
AIM Direction from Series C Financing Round
1. Acceleration of global business development
– Driving joint research and product development with medical institutions in the U.S., Asia-Pacific region, etc.
– Acquiring the talent necessary to expand global business
2. Developing a proprietary cloud platform to eliminate GI cancer around the world
– Creating an in-house cloud platform that connects endoscopy rooms around the world to AIM’s endoscopic AI.
Comments from Investors, Partners and CEO at AI Medical Service: https://kyodonewsprwire.jp/prwfile/release/M107153/202204200183/_prw_PA1fl_aZ3XysvT.pdf
(*) Total investment by SVF1 and SVF2 since inception to end of 2021, cited from the presentation material for SoftBank Group Corp.’s Earnings Investor Briefing for Q3 FY2021.
About AI Medical Service Inc.
AI Medical Service (AIM) is a Tokyo-based med-tech company established with the mission to “Save Lives All Over the World.” Japan leads the world in endoscopic diagnosis and treatment, providing firms and researchers with access to large amounts of high-quality data. AIM is the leading player in the field of endoscopic AI, engaging in joint research with more than 100 medical institutions. By bringing endoscopic AI to real-world clinical setting as soon as possible, AIM aims to reduce the number of missed cancer diagnoses and save lives around the world.
Company: AI Medical Service Inc.
Address: Hareza Tower 11F, 1-18-1 Higashiikebukuro, Toshima-ku, Tokyo 170-0013, Japan
CEO: Tomohiro Tada
Founded: September 1, 2017
Business: Development of endoscopic AI
Source: AI Medical Service Inc.