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Big in Japan Secures $700,000 Seed Round.

Dallas-Based Idea Factory for Mobile Applications Receives Angel Funding to Pursue Apps for Google Android, Apple iPhone

DALLAS -- Big in Japan Inc., a Dallas-based idea factory for mobile applications, announced that it has received $700,000 in seed financing from Architel LP. The investment comes on the heels of Big in Japan's victory in Google's $10 million Android Developer Challenge last month.

Big in Japan's ShopSavvy[TM], formerly known as GoCart, was named one of 10 winners among nearly 1,800 entries in the Google Challenge, a contest to build mobile-phone applications for the Android operating system. Big in Japan was awarded a $275,000 prize by Google for its winning application, a personal shopping assistant for Android-based phones.

"Architel sees big things ahead for Big in Japan and we're excited to be part of it," said Scott Ryan, CEO of Architel, an IT outsourcing company and incubator for technology startups. "The Big in Japan team is proving to be on the leading edge of mobile application development -- and with Android-based handsets soon to hit the market, we believe the company is in the right space at the right time."

"Architel's investment provides the resources we need to build the 'idea factory' we want Big in Japan to be," said Rylan Barnes, Big in Japan co-founder and lead developer of ShopSavvy. "ShopSavvy is the first of many commercial applications we intend to make a reality for users of Android-based handsets and iPhones."

ShopSavvy enables consumers to comparison shop on the go, simply by scanning any product's barcode using the phone's built-in camera. With this information, ShopSavvy searches the Web for the best prices on the product, displaying the lowest prices online as well as at nearby brick-and-mortar retailers. ShopSavvy looks up product reviews to further assist with purchase decisions.

ShopSavvy will be available to consumers through Google's Android Market when the first Android-powered handsets are introduced commercially later this year. You can view a ShopSavvy demo at www.youtube.com/watch?v=OALjXec6tHo.

About Big in Japan

Big in Japan Inc. is a Dallas-based idea factory for mobile applications, building software for Google's open-source Android platform and Apple's iPhone. Big in Japan's ShopSavvy application - a personal shopping assistant - will be available on Android-powered handsets later this year. For more information about Big in Japan, visit the company's Web site at www.biggu.com.

About Architel

Dallas-based Architel is an IT infrastructure outsourcing company focused on medium-sized businesses in north Texas. Architel offers managed outsourcing for a flat monthly fee, providing clients a turnkey solution to their IT headaches and a compelling alternative to traditional outsourcing services. Architel is an investor in early-stage, Dallas-based technology companies including ServiceGuy and Whitebox. Visit www.architel.com for more information.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Sep 18, 2008
Words:456
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