Ixla Goes Wild For Japanese Market

Australian-based digital
photography and Internet products provider Ixla has expanded its stake in the
Japanese market, after taking a 40 percent share of Japanese software
publishing company Jungle with
its existing cash reserves.

Jungle is already one of Ixla’s Japanese distributors, with Ixla’s
Web Easy site design tool, branded as Home Page Seisakuou 2001 for the
Japanese market, published by Jungle and launched in the market in
February.

Jungle will raise more funding this year to finance the expansion of
its business into areas such as e-commerce. Ixla intends to participate
in this future funding.

This latest investment is a shift in Ixla’s approach, which until now
had focused on US markets. “Our attention this year will be on Asia and
particularly Japan,” said Ixla chief executive officer Soon Teh.

“The investment in Jungle will give us the ability to gain valuable
market intelligence and to ensure we get maximum exposure in the retail
outlets.”

Ixla’s move into Japan began earlier this year, when the company
invested in Japan’s largest independent cable ISP, Chiga Service
Centre.

It followed this with the February announcement of a strategic
alliance with the country’s largest community of personalised Web sites,
GeoCities Japan. Under the
deal, GeoCities, which is a joint venture between Yahoo! and Softbank, will promote Web Easy/Home
Page Seisakuou to its base of more than 350,000 subscribers.

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