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Mobile payment gateway provider Opn Co. was valued at roughly $1 billion (¥135 billion) in a $120 million funding round last month, making it one of a handful of unicorns in Japan.

The Tokyo-based company, previously known as Omise, owes much of its success to its early entry into another Asian nation: Thailand. Entering the market in 2013, when it was heavily reliant on cash transactions, Opn seized a sizable share of mobile payments by helping small businesses make the digital transition and getting the major network operators to adopt its technology, the company said.

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