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Japan starts scheme linking midsize firms with foreign startups

19/02/2021 02:50 PM

TOKYO, Feb. 19 -- Japan's economy ministry has launched a scheme for introducing midsize companies to foreign startups to boost their business, reported Jiji Press.

The Japan Innovation Bridge, or J-Bridge, initiative aims to accelerate digital transformation, or reforms using digital technology, at Japanese companies by taking advantage of the wave of digital transformation speeding up in many places in Asia.

The scheme will mainly support six fields on which Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga's administration places special emphasis, such as decarbonization and medicine.

Under J-Bridge, launched Thursday, business-savvy coordinators in and outside Japan work with financial institutions and municipalities to match Japanese and foreign companies.

The ministry hopes that the initiative will facilitate business talks and market research leading to product development and mergers and acquisitions.

Startups in Singapore, Indonesia, Vietnam, India, Israel and Australia will be matched with Japanese companies. For the field of decarbonization, including offshore wind power generation, the scheme extends to US and European companies.

Other categories included in the scheme are "mobility," which covers autonomous driving, "retail," which is seeing progress in digitalisation amid the novel coronavirus crisis, "agritech," or the fusion of agriculture and technology, and "smart city," the creation of next-generation cities using cutting-edge technologies.





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