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Singapore-Based Mobility Startup SWAT Mobility Raises Funds To Expand in Japan

Published on:
February 8, 2021
  • The investment is led by Global Brain GB-VII Growth Fund Investment Limited Partnership based in Japan
  • SWAT Mobility optimises the movement of people and resources in the local community with its proprietary high-precision routing algorithm technology

8 February 2021, Singapore - SWAT Mobility, a mobility startup headquartered in Singapore, announced today that it had successfully raised funds in a round led by Global Brain GB-VII Growth Fund Investment Limited Partnership (hereinafter known as GB-VII Fund), along with existing investors. The funds will be used to support the company’s efforts to expand its business in Japan, including service development, product localisation and other related go-to-market activities.

SWAT Mobility offers high-precision route optimisation technology powered by their proprietary algorithm, which has topped world-renowned Li and Lim benchmarks. Its technology efficiently pools multiple passengers in high-capacity vehicles with a minimal number of vehicles. The firm is currently operational in seven countries (Singapore, Japan, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Australia), solving mobility issues for companies and governments through the provision of demand-responsive, ride-sharing services.

Prior to the investment, SWAT Mobility has been transforming the Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) space in Japan. Niigata City is currently running trials of urban on-demand buses powered by SWAT Mobility’s technology. In addition, the company is also in collaboration with J:COM, offering ride-sharing services for sales employees to get to and from their business appointments and meetings.

GB-VII Fund joins a strong list of investors which includes The University of Tokyo Edge Capital Partners, iGlobe Platinum Fund II Pte. Ltd., and LKJ Capital Japan. GB-VII Fund is part of Global Brain Co., Ltd. (Global Brain), one of the largest venture capital firms in Japan and founded by Yasuhiko Yurimoto who is currently its President and CEO. 

“The market size for demand-driven transport utilising route optimisation algorithms is expanding, due to increasing demand for transportation options that address COVID-19 concerns and existing social and environmental issues such as traffic congestion through the efficient movement of people and cargo. SWAT Mobility has developed excellent route optimisation algorithms for these purposes and Global Brain hopes that SWAT Mobility can apply its technology to solve mobility challenges in a variety of "large" and "wide" use cases.”

says Yasuhiko Yurimoto, President and CEO of Global Brain.

With the financing from GB-VII Fund, SWAT Mobility will invest in service development to solve various domestic issues related to mobility in Japan. The company will further strengthen the development of its proprietary algorithm, to effectively optimise the "movement" of the mobile workforce in innovative ways.

Japan faces mobility challenges due to a rapidly ageing population, shortage of bus drivers and the rising cost of operating bus services. The problem is particularly more pronounced in the rural areas where there is a high concentration of ageing population, but limited bus routes and decreased connectivity to regional transportation systems. SWAT Mobility can play a pivotal role in transforming the transport options in Japan and improve quality of lives.

Jarrold Ong, CEO and Co-founder of SWAT Mobility adds,

“Japan is an important market in Asia for mobility advancements; it is a crucial market to SWAT Mobility. It is prime for innovations in MaaS and urban on-demand transportation due to its existing mobility challenges. For a start, we will be growing our ride-pooling service for corporations to help companies achieve cost optimisation through fleet minimisation. In parallel, we are developing our collaboration with local partners to offer innovative solutions to address the challenges in public transportation.”

In addition to the funding, Global Brain will provide a wide range of support including business development and intellectual property strategy for SWAT Mobility.

”We are pleased to receive hands-on support from Global Brain’s professionals for our expansion in Japan. We will continue to partner with companies and refine our products to solve transportation issues unique to the Japanese market.”

says Masashi Suehiro, Head of SWAT Mobility in Japan.