By Michael Mayhew July 16, 2020
Tokyo-based expert network VisasQ recently announced that it has formed a business partnership and made a capital investment into technology driven expert network and enterprise software provider DeepBench.
Details of New Alliance
VisasQ, a Japanese focused expert network, announced that it has established a commercial arrangement with Boston-based DeepBench to use its proprietary advisor search and matching system to expand its network of experts outside of Japan, particularly in the US and Europe. In addition, VisasQ has invested approximately USD $300,000 in DeepBench to fund the firm’s future growth.
Hidetoshi Uriu, COO & Head of Global Business Development at VisasQ explained this new arrangement, “We have built up a track record of overseas matching and have steadily grown our overseas business. We are pleased to have this opportunity to partner with DeepBench who has the same vision with us, and take an important step to further expand our overseas business in line with our strategy at the time of our IPO. By combining DeepBench’s technology-driven systems and our proprietary technologies and matching system, we are looking forward to realizing together a world of “Connecting Insights and Aspirations Across the Globe.”
“DeepBench has heavily invested in technology since our inception in 2016. We are uniquely positioned in the global expert network service industry,” says Yishi Zuo, CEO & Co-Founder of DeepBench. “I deeply empathize with VisasQ’s vision, and I’m very excited to work with Eiko (VisasQ’s founder & CEO), who is also an MIT Sloan alum. We look forward to collaborating with VisasQ, which has built a formidable position in Japan. Together, DeepBench and VisasQ will continue to spearhead innovations in connecting global expertise via our proprietary technologies.”
Founded in 2012, VisasQ provides Japanese corporations with access to a database of over 100,000 local and increasingly global experts for one-on-one interviews. In March of this year, VisasQ was listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange and operates from offices in Tokyo to serve the Japanese market and Singapore to serve clients in broader Asia. The firm currently employs more than 100 staff domiciled in these two offices.
DeepBench, founded in 2016 at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Graduate School, is a technology-driven expert network providing over 400 corporate and financial services clients with expert engagements, as well as an enterprise knowledge management platform. While the firm was previously focused on licensing its technology to companies looking to build and maintain their own knowledge networks, recently DeepBench has refocused on marketing its own expert network services.
VisasQ’s recent partnership and investment in DeepBench makes sense as the firm tries to expand its network outside of Japan, particularly in the US and Europe. Currently, VisasQ maintains a network of 10,000 non-Japanese experts. While VisasQ is looking to service customers outside of Japan, much of the new deal is to grow its network of non-Japanese experts in order to better serve its Japanese corporate customers with a single source of global expertise. DeepBench’s expert sourcing and matching technology enables VisasQ to quickly meet its clients’ needs for US and European experts.
The nonexclusive deal is also good for DeepBench as it helps fund its growth, but doesn’t impede it from serving other expert networks or consulting firms looking to implement AI on top of existing manual expert sourcing and matching techniques to lower the overall costs of building and maintaining an expert network.
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