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Ricoh to launch $7m seed fund to back Japan's mRNA startups

Company targets fledgling businesses with eye toward boosting contract drugmaking

Ricoh entered the contract drugmaking industry by acquiring a U.S. startup in July. (Photo courtesy of Ricoh)

TOKYO -- Japan's Ricoh will create a new fund to invest in pharmaceutical startups working with messenger RNA technology, accelerating its push to diversify beyond copiers and other office equipment.

Ricoh will launch the 1 billion yen ($7.27 million) corporate venture capital fund together with Tokyo-based Venture Labo Investment as early as September. The seed fund, which will be operated for 10 years, is the first in Japan to specialize in mRNA technology, according to Ricoh.

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