Dentsu Launches IT Venture Fund

TOKYO (04/07/2000) - Dentsu Inc., Japan's largest advertising agency, has created a new venture fund to support information technology-related companies and in-house ventures, it said here today.

The Dentsu.com No. 1 Fund will begin with a capital layout of 3 billion yen (US$28.6 million) and was formed in response to increased requests to the Tokyo company for assistance from both the media and clients in the field of IT-related and digital business, it said in a statement.

The company said it hopes speedy investment in IT-related businesses will result in the creation of new and innovative areas of information technology that can help it provide better services. It cited advanced interactive media and content resources as two examples of such areas.

Both Japanese and foreign companies in Japan will be investment targets for the new fund, which Dentsu said will also be promoted internally in the hope of fostering a new entrepreneurship within the company.

The company formed a new joint venture, Dentsu.com, with The Industrial Bank of Japan Group and Dai-Ichi Kangyo Bank Group to manage the fund, which had already invested in several companies by the end of March, the company said, but did not name the funded ventures.

Dentsu, in Tokyo, can be found online at http://www.dentsu.co.jp/.

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