Hey, a leading payments and e-commerce platform in Japan that helps businesses easily create bespoke online stores and process in-store cashless payments, today announced it secured a Series E investment led by Bain Capital Tech Opportunities with participation from PayPal Ventures, Goldman Sachs, YJ Capital, Anatole, and existing investor World Innovation Lab. The funding, along with Bain Capital’s global expertise with integrated software and payments, will enable hey to accelerate growth and serve the large and growing number of businesses in Japan who are looking to establish an online retail presence and accept cashless payments in stores.
In conjunction with the new investment round, hey also announced that it has acquired Coubic, an emerging consumer-facing reservations platform that will help hey further scale and diversify into adjacent categories. Financial terms of both private investments were not disclosed.
Formed in 2018 by the merger of mobile point of sale (mPOS) terminal business Coiney and e-commerce platform Stores.jp, hey provides end-to-end support for businesses as they create and maintain personalized virtual storefronts and accept in-person payments. The platform plays an important role allowing merchants in Japan to engage and transact with current and prospective consumers at a fraction of the cost of other alternatives in the market.
Japan is the third largest economy in the world with $2.7 trillion in consumer spending, but cashless payments and e-commerce have historically been underpenetrated compared to other developed markets. However, interest in both categories is at an inflection point today as Japan is in the midst of a generational transition to a more modern, digital consumer economy. Concurrently, COVID-19 has driven an acceleration in consumer and merchant demand for mobile payment options as a frictionless alternative to cash. Together, these tailwinds have positioned hey to capture market share through smart investments in product development and customer service as well as enhancements to its go-to-market, cross-selling, and acquisition strategies.
“Yusuke and his talented team are at the forefront of developing integrated mPOS and e-commerce solutions that enable Japanese merchants to engage with and sell to consumers across the country, even those using legacy payment methods. Their innovative technology creates a ‘one stop shop’ that drives a more efficient, friendly and cost-effective shopping experience,” said Darren Abrahamson, Managing Director at Bain Capital Tech Opportunities. “We are excited to partner with hey to help drive the next phase of growth in existing and complementary markets, which kicks off with the exciting acquisition of Coubic.”
“hey was formed with a vision to employ our innovative technology platform to foster connections between Japanese consumers and merchants who have been under-served by e-commerce solutions in the marketplace. Our 100% growth in gross merchandise value over the past year and this new partnership with a world class group of investors are key milestones in realizing that vision,” said Yusuke Sato, President of hey. “Partnering with Bain Capital as well as PayPal Ventures and leveraging their global platform and deep payments and e-commerce experience will enable us to meet the growing demand for dynamic, remote shopping experiences for Japanese consumers.”
Bain Capital has deep global investment experience across the payments and e-commerce sectors, having invested in and added value to a wide-range of companies at all stages of their growth cycle including Concardis, Finix, Mirakl, Nets, Nexi and Worldpay (acquired by FIS). The firm has also become a leading investor in Japan since establishing its Tokyo office in 2006, with a portfolio of preeminent technology companies including EmberPoint, Kioxia, Macromill and Works Human Intelligence. Concurrent with the new investment, Naofumi Nishi, a Principal at Bain Capital Private Equity in Japan will join hey’s board of directors.