Business Insider Japan: The World’s First Social Restaurant Review Service with Token Rewards “SynchroLife” Announces Seed Funding — Including Token Equity Convertible
SynchroLife’s funding announcement last week has attracted a lot of attention in Japan, and our founder and CEO Tomochika Kamiya was interviewed by Business Insider Japan!
The article includes comments from the exclusive interview along with discussion as to what token equity convertibles (TEC) are and their implications for the future of investing.
We’ve translated the piece into English below, or you can read the original in Japanese here: https://www.businessinsider.jp/post-173013
Thank you Chikara Kawamura for the interview opportunity!
Business Insider Japan — August 10, 2018
The World’s First Social Restaurant Review Service with Token Rewards “SynchroLife” Announces Seed Funding — Including Token Equity Convertible
GINKAN Inc., managing company of SynchroLife, the new social restaurant review service with a token economy, has announced a business alliance and seed round with mobile point service company Ceres Inc. (Listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange). This 720,000 USD (80 million Japanese yen) seed round was an allocation of new shares, and Ceres Inc. was joined by Fujio Komura (Former CEO of Cybird Holdings) in investing.
GINKAN released an update for SynchroLife on August 2, 2018 making it the world’s first social restaurant review service with token rewards and cryptocurrency wallet features. Ceres has a history of investing in blockchain related companies, such as the cryptocurrency exchange Bitbank, and the company found common ground with GINKAN mission.
This funding round includes a token equity convertible rights for GINKAN’s subsidiary company SynchroLife Limited’s cryptocurrency token along with the allocation of new shares. This cryptocurrency token is currently used inside the social restaurant review service “SynchroLife” as a reward to reviewers and will be usable for meal payments at participating restaurants in the future.
Traditionally, investors are generally only able to exit from an investment if the company holds an Initial Public Offering (IPO) or is bought out. However with a token equity convertible investors now have a new option. This token equity convertible is a new concept being nicknamed a “TEC” among American venture capital companies, and it is gathering attention as a new investment method making use of cryptocurrency.
Investments Moving from “Stocks” to “Tokens”
Many startups have recently begun choosing to issue their own token and hold an “Initial Coin Offering” (ICO) to fundraise. But raising funds through ICO is not easy, government regulations have been growing stricter to protect investors from scam projects and companies that do hold legitimate ICOs find it difficult to fundraise through traditional share methods after their ICO.
By using a token equity convertible like GINKAN and Ceres have done in this funding round, companies that have held an ICO can still raise through traditional funding methods. Investors can also feel assured, knowing that whether or not the company they have invested in goes public or is bought out they can still exit by exchanging shares for tokens.
GINKAN’s founder and CEO Tomochika Kamiya comments, “As a public company Ceres has to explain their actions to stockholders, and I am deeply grateful that even in that situation they proposed this cutting edge investment method. I believe that going forward we will see increasingly more and more investment moving from stocks to tokens.”
Tomochika continued, “Even so, publicly traded companies are unlikely to suddenly switch to investing to the new and relatively unknown world of tokens. We are in a transition period now and need to balance stock investment and token investment as we build a bridge to the next stage. I believe GINKAN raising funding with a token equity convertible is a big step forward for this industry.”
Restaurant Recommendation System that “Synchronizes” to Your Preferences
GINKAN’s service SynchroLife is a social restaurant review platform where users can post reviews of their experiences at restaurants. SynchroLife includes an artificial intelligence based restaurant recommendation system which analyzes each individual user’s content and actions within the service to determine their preferences and give them personalized recommendations.
Services such as Tabelog and Gurunabi allow users to search for restaurants by genre or location, but they are left to sort through other user reviews or restaurant photos to actually chose where to go. SynchroLife aims to “Synchronize to the tastes of each user” and make restaurant search faster than ever with reliable search results.
“I’m often asked how SynchroLife could possibly know each user’s food preferences, and it’s true, we don’t really know. We can’t truly account for the weather or time, your moods or health. What you want to each could change by the moment and we can’t account for it all. But we do believe most people have a general standard preference. Whether you prefer somewhere cheap and delicious even if it’s old and a little dirty, or you prefer somewhere with a luxurious feel even if it only tastes average, things like that. Our recommendation gets more accurate over time as we match users together and with restaurants based on these standards and needs,” comments CEO Tomochika.
In order to accelerate the growth of reviews and reviewers and increase the accuracy of their recommendations, SynchroLife added token rewards this August. This gives an incentive for users posting high quality reviews to continue to post.
In the future, SynchroLife will be adding new features to allow the token to be used to purchase dining tickets or pay for meals at participating restaurants as well.
SynchroLife’s CEO Tomochika comments his goal is to “Build a new economy around the world for people who love good food” and SynchroLife is already available in Japanese, English, Korean, and Chinese. Although the service started in Japan they plan to work towards expanding towards a global platform next.
(Interview and Reporting by Chikara Kawamura)
Thank you again Chikara Kawamura and Business Insider Japan for the wonderful article! The original Japanese article can be read here: https://www.businessinsider.jp/post-173013
You can also learn more about SynchroLife’s recent funding announcement in our recent press release here:
Please visit the following links to learn more about SynchroLife! 📲
Official Website: https://synchrolife.org
White paper: https://synchrolife.org/whitepaper.html
SynchroLife Mobile App:
iOS App Store: https://itunes.apple.com/app/id557532449
Android Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=jp.co.synchrolife
Other Medium Articles by the SynchroLife Team:
・SynchroLife Major Launch Announcement — Becoming the World’s First Restaurant Review Platform with Token Rewards
・SynchroLife CEO Tomochika Kamiya Interviewed by Plug and Play Japan
・SynchroLife Nominated at “THE COIN” in Tokyo, CEO Tomochika Kamiya Presents
・How SynchroLife Takes a Unique Position in the Competitive Restaurant Search and Discovery Market
・Current Features of the SynchroLife Beta App
・Why We Decided to Use Blockchain Technology with SynchroLife
・SynchroLife’s Token-Based Economy: How Users Can Earn & Spend SynchroCoin (SYC)
・Behind the Scenes: The Meaning of “SynchroLife” and Our Seahorse Icon
・How SynchroLife will Handle Fake Reviews