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150 million yen was raised through a third-party allocation of new shares.

CAST has raised 150 million yen through a third-party allocation of new shares from Real Tech Holdings Co., Ltd., Higin Capital Co., Ltd., and TOA Nondestructive Inspection Co., Ltd. With the funds raised this time, CAST will develop the system to obtain the "Explosion Proof" standard certification, which is essential when introducing the pipe wall thinning monitoring system to refineries and major chemical plants, and expand the sales system to increase the number of customers to whom the system can be introduced.

■Company Overview

The number of leakage and explosion accidents caused by inadequate monitoring is increasing every year at factory sites due to aging factories and a shortage of inspectors due to an aging workforce. In addition, inspections are mainly carried out once every six months to once a year by human inspectors with inspection equipment in harsh environments such as high temperatures, high places, and confined spaces.

CAST is a Kumamoto University-approved venture that aims to solve problems in the manufacturing industry under the philosophy of "Sensors everywhere" with its unique thin piezoelectric sensors with heat resistance and flexibility that utilize "sol-gel composite piezoelectric device" technology, a result of Kumamoto University research. CAST's ultrasonic sensors can be installed in any location and can be "left on" to monitor pipe wall thinning, thereby realizing smart security and eliminating the labor-intensive task of manufacturers inspecting hazardous locations with sensors in hand.

■Main Use of Proceeds

The financing will be provided by the Realtech Fund*1 managed by Real Tech Holdings Co., Ltd., (Location: Sumida-ku, Tokyo; Representatives: Yukihiro Maru and Akihiko Nagata), the Higin Venture Fund*2 managed by Higin Capital Co., Ltd. (Location: Kumamoto City, Kumamoto Prefecture; President & CEO: Teru Yokoyama), TOA Nondestructive Inspection Co., Ltd.(Location: Yahatahigashi-ku, Kitakyushu City, Fukuoka Prefecture; Representative: Shotaro Nakayama).

Currently, CAST is implementing a POC for a pipe wall thinning monitoring system, mainly at refineries and major chemical plants. As it is essential to obtain explosion-proof certification as a step toward the full-scale introduction of the system, this financing will accelerate the development and procedures to obtain explosion-proof certification. In addition, with new members joining the company, including a new director appointed in April, the company will further recruit new members and establish a sales structure to promote the full-scale introduction of CAST products.

■About CAST

Establishment: September 2019

Location: Head office: 2-39-1 Kurokami, Chuo-ku, Kumamoto City, Kumamoto Prefecture (inside Kumamoto University)

Head office: 1F, 5-7-6 Toroku, Chuo-ku, Kumamoto City, Kumamoto Prefecture

Representative Director: Kei Nakatsuma

Business: Research, development, manufacturing, and sales of sensors and peripheral devices and software

Inquiries about employment and products:

■Exhibition Schedule

June 21-23, 2023 28th Mechanical Components and Materials Technology Expo at Tokyo Big Sight

July 26-28, 2023 Maintenance Resilience TOKYO 2023 at Tokyo Big Sight



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