Tokyo-based cryptocurrency exchange Coincheck is launching a new investment fund.

With a preliminary funding cap of 50 million yen (about $450,000), the fund will be used to support startups that are developing blockchain projects. Coincheck, in announcing the move, suggested that this amount could expand depending on the pace of investments.

Notably, the fund will also be leveraged to support teams that are planning to launch initial coin offerings or ICOs, according to co-founder and COO Yusuke Otsuka in an interview with TechCrunch.

Coincheck’s explainer on the new investment fund details how it wants to offer business development and technology advice to companies that participate. In the blog post, the exchange cites “barriers to entry” for new companies looking to enter the space. As such, Coincheck is positioning the fund as a way to navigate some of the trickier waters involved.

Coincheck first opened its doors in 2014, unveiling its exchange service in September and officially launching in November of that year.

The fund’s launch comes amid rising momentum for the tech in Japan.

The past few months have seen a growing number of retailers move to begin testing bitcoin transactions, following a move by the government to deem cryptocurrency as a legal form of payment.

Investment data image via Shutterstock

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