Japan’s AI-based learning startup Toy Eight raises fund to launch service in Malaysia

01, Jun. 2020

Image by Esi Grünhagen from Pixabay
Image by Esi Grünhagen from Pixabay

KUALA LUMPUR, NNA -- Japanese AI-backed customized online learning startup Toy Eight Holdings Co. has raised funds to launch intellectual education services customized for the individual child in Malaysia.

The company raised tens of millions of yen (tens of thousands of U.S. dollars) from two venture capital firms in a pre-seed round before full-scale product development commences, Toy Eight CEO Masaki Ishibashi told NNA last Friday. He stopped short of disclosing the exact amount of the funds.

Toy Eight Holdings plans to use the funds for its “Toy8 Box” and “Toy8” intellectual education projects in Malaysia.

In Toy8 Box, the company will conduct AI-assisted analysis of children’s talent based on the theory of multiple intelligence and deliver an intellectual training kit customized for each child every month.

In the Toy8 project, the company will establish play areas dedicated to intellectual education for children at shopping malls.

The move comes as there is growing demand in Malaysia and other Southeast Asian countries for education services and content customized for the individual child as parents are increasingly enthusiastic about their children’s education.

Toy Eight launched the “Toybox of Japan” project in Malaysia in 2016, in which the firm teamed up with Dai Nippon Printing Co. (DNP), a business group diversified from packaging to IT services, to organize experience-based intellectual education events at commercial complexes in Kuala Lumpur. In 2018, it established Toybox Creations and Technology Sdn. Bhd., a local subsidiary.

DNP will provide content for Toy8 that will be opened at The Gardens Mall, a commercial complex in Kuala Lumpur, Ishibashi said.

Opportunities for parents to pay attention to the talent of their children have increased because schools have been temporarily shut down, and schoolchildren have been forced to stay home following the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Toy Eight would like to use its technology to visualize people’s talent to create a world in which everyone can show their diverse talent. The private education market is rapidly growing in Southeast Asia where high-quality public education isn’t sufficiently available,” Ishibashi said in a press release.