Japan tech, so often forgotten but strong!

3-in-1: 3 digital news in 1 minute. On Monday. Episode 211

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Kobo is a black and white e-reader, from Japan e-commerce #1 Rakuten. In first quarter winning 2.2 million new users. Kobo is a solid competitor to Amazon Kindle in partnering with strong local chains like Fnac in France or Booktopia in Australia. A colour reader is in the pipeline and might change the game in readers and tablets. Opinion for B2B: A very discreet actor, Rakuten! The Tokyo-based company dominates the Japanese market (commerce, payment, rewards) and grew by 18% in Q1 2020. It has acquired many companies in the last 10 years. With more or less success, Kobo was bought for 315m USD in 2011 and it’s starting to pay off.

No, Amazon doesn’t reign in the e-book business!

Recruit is the most unknown digital actor from Japan. It started in digital as a specialist in recruitment platforms, then acquired Indeed and Glassdoor. Today a new investment in Steady, another recruitment app with $15m ($38,5m in total). An app famous since Shaquille O’Neal is also named as an investor in Steady, certainly because it’s a community-based app to find jobs and better finance. Opinion for B2B: Recruit holdings has invested in many digital platforms, always with a focus on local businesses and recruitment. They prominently invested in Quando (Berlin), leader in restaurant booking platforms in Europe. They describe themselves as the leader in “matching platforms” — leader in own defined market.

Recruit is a typical hidden-champion — we love them here!

Everyone heard of it: the shortage of Switch during the pandemic, high demand and supply chain issues on the Nintendo side. Also announcing two new games: Pokemon Cafe Mix and Ninjala! Opinion for B2B: This shortage was the catalyst of reaction to the pandemic situation: consumers at home buying more Switch and manufacturers having difficulty to build the consoles! On Friday the annual shareholder conference in Kyoto was restricted and for the first time, no Nintendo characters were distributed.

Nintendo, 111 year-old company, so often called out-of-date, is a big 2020 winner!

Authors are the 10 trend scouters at Space and Lemon, always on the hunt for the newest trends in tech and digital. Gathered here in original weekly news since 2016 — no re-write of TechCrunch, always with an opinion and B2B takeout. Come back next Monday and share your opinion.

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