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KDDI Invests in Aoi.co, Operators of the AOI-ZEMI Smartphone Tutoring School, Through the KDDI Open Innovation Fund

No.2015-151

  • KDDI CORPORATION

November 25,2015

KDDI CORPORATION (Headquarters: Chiyoda, Tokyo; President: Takashi Tanaka; hereafter KDDI) has invested in Aoi.co, operators of the AOI-ZEMI smartphone tutoring school, through the KDDI Open Innovation Fund. The KDDI Open Innovation Fund (hereafter KOIF) is a corporate venture fund is that operated by Global Brain Corporation (Headquarters: Shibuya, Tokyo; President: Yasuhiko Yurimoto).

From June 2012 [1], AOI-ZEMI has operated as an online tutoring school for junior high and high school students providing high quality lectures free of charge [2] which are not subject to the limits of location. Along with live streaming of lecture classes to smartphones and tablets, AOI-ZEMI features the ability for students to chat with each other and with lectures using real-time chats, and by utilizing this seamless communication, students can ask lecturers questions as they would in a real classroom and create classmates.

AOI-ZEMI participated in the fifth installment of the KDDI Mugen Labo startup incubation program where, from the onset of the program, KDDI identified them as a promising startup company in the online tutoring school market. KDDI has since provided service construction and operation support, held joint special lectures through KDDI Mobile Phone Learning Classes [3], and more.

As a communications service provider, KDDI firmly endorses AOI-ZEMI's corporate philosophy of providing children with high quality, low cost tutoring schools regardless of income or location, and has invested the company through the KOIF making it the fourth KDDI Mugen Labo graduate KDDI has invested in, seeing the possibility of its expected future market scale of 1 trillion yen [4] in the domestic tutoring school market.
Starting with this capital partnership, KDDI will offer operational support, such as listing the AOI-ZEMI app on au Smart Pass, and business development support. KDDI will also continue to provide new values to customers through investments in promising startup companies.

  • [1]
    The app began from August 2013
  • [2]
    Paid plans start from the ¥900/month Light Plan which includes recorded classroom viewing and online text display. The ¥3,500/month Premium Plan includes the Light Plan services along with answers to individual questions, a grade guarantee system, and the use of textbook downloads.
  • [3]
    Mobile Phone Learning Class held by KDDI and the AOI-ZEMI Smartphone Tutoring School over the Internet
    Open New Windowhttp://time-space.kddi.com/special/specialreport/20140221/index.html
  • [4]
    Source: "PDF Download2015 Education Industry White Paper (353KB)" by Yano Research Institute Ltd.

For more details, see the Attachment.
Attachment:KDDI Invests in Aoi.co, Operators of the AOI-ZEMI Smartphone Tutoring School, Through the KDDI Open Innovation Fund


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