FEB 6, 2024
Animoca Brands makes key appointment to drive Japanese market expansion
Animoca Brands Japan, a key subsidiary of Hong Kong-headquartered Web3 investor Animoca Brands, has welcomed Kensuke Amo as its Chief Operating Officer (COO) to spearhead the company's growth in Japan.
Amo, a seasoned industry veteran who previously served as the managing executive officer at Japanese bitcoin wallet and exchange service Coincheck, officially assumed his role as COO last Thursday.
With a proven track record in launching NFT businesses and steering new crypto asset ventures, Amo played a pivotal role at Coincheck. During his tenure as an executive officer from 2020, he pioneered initiatives such as Japan's first NFT marketplace for crypto asset exchanges and an inaugural initial exchange offering (IEO).
In a social media post, Amo stated that in the role, he “will be committed to doing [his] best to contribute [to] Web3 technology [so that it takes] root in society.”
In 2022, Amo ascended to the leadership position at Coincheck, where he led the NFT business and metaverse business, heading three distinct web domains. His involvement in the expansion of "The Sandbox" and "Otherside" in Japan, stemming from the partnership between Coincheck and Animoca Brands in 2020, further underscores his influence in the sector.
Japanese market expansion
Regulatory headwinds in the United States in 2023 led to the company pivoting and focusing on non-U.S. markets. It became clear later in 2023 that the company had a specific interest in growing its business in Japan when Animoca Brands Japan acquired an equity share in Cool Cats Group, an NFT-related project. That deal also implicated a collaboration with Animoca’s digital experience label, KLKTN.
As Animoca Brands Japan strategically aligns itself within Animoca Brands' larger framework, Kensuke Amo aims to leverage the company's extensive assets and network, including over 400 portfolio companies. His mission involves combining his expertise in business and rule-making within the Japanese Web3 industry to facilitate the integration of Web3 into society.
Commenting further on his appointment, Amo expressed his commitment to advancing the Web3 landscape in Japan. He stated:
“As a strategic subsidiary of Animoca Brands, Animoca Brands Japan will make the most of its assets and network, including its more than 400 portfolio companies, while combining its knowledge and experience in business and rule-making in the Japanese Web3 industry.”
Established in 2021, Animoca Brands Japan has played a crucial role in supporting Japanese intellectual property and content holders in their global Web3 expansion efforts. The company secured an undisclosed investment from Mitsui & Co., one of Japan’s largest trading companies, in June.
Daisuke Iwase, the CEO of Animoca Brands Japan, expressed optimism about the collaboration with Kensuke Amo, emphasizing his leadership in the realms of crypto assets, NFTs and the metaverse in Japan.
Amo’s industry involvement extends beyond Animoca Brands Japan, as he currently advises the Japan Cryptoasset Business Association (JCBA), Shibuya-ku Startup Ecosystem, Web3 project "OASIS" and real estate information service company LIFULL Co., Ltd. Additionally, he is the author of "Textbook of NFT" and "Non Fungible Me."