Animoca Brands KK, the Japanese unit of Hong Kong blockchain investment firm Animoca Brands, said Friday that it has raised US$45 million from the world's second-largest financial group, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) and parent Animoca Brands. According to a press release, MUFG and Animoca Brands each invested $22.5 million, valuing Animoca Brands Japan at a preliminary valuation of $500 million.

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Animoca Brands Japan said the new capital will be used to invest in popular intellectual property licenses, develop the company, promote NFT adoption and build a network for NFTs. In March 2022, MUFG and Animoca Brands KK announced a collaboration to develop the NFT ecosystem in Japan. Animoca Brands KK was founded in October 2021. It announced in February that it had raised 1.1 billion yen ($10 million) in the first round. The company also said in July of this year that it had raised $75 million in its last funding round. Thus, the company announced that it increased its valuation to $5.9 billion.

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According to the publication, the Japanese subsidiary was established in 2021 to support the adoption of web3 among Japanese intellectual property (IP) and content owners. In February, Animoca Brands Japan completed its $10 million initial round. MCP IPX One Fund and Animoca Brands participated in the tour. Then in March, the subsidiary spoke with MUFG. Announced that it is considering a collaboration for non-fungiable token (NFT) related business opportunities.

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Meanwhile, MUFG is a leading financial firm headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. It currently has 170,000 employees and operates in more than 50 countries. MUFG shares are traded on the Tokyo, Nagoya and New York stock exchanges. The firm also manages $3.1 trillion in assets. According to the publication, the new funds will help secure intellectual property licenses. It will also be used to promote web3 adoption and improve internal capabilities.

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On the other hand, the ecosystem of Animoca Brands is growing with more projects. Animoca Brands and its subsidiary Lympo announced on August 15 that they are in the process of developing a chess-inspired blockchain game “Anichess” together with Play Magnus Group (PMG), the world leader in the chess industry. Meanwhile, behind PMG is Magnus Carlsen. Carlsen is a five-time World Chess Champion from Norway. This development has also recently triggered the excitement for the Animoca Brands ecosystem.