Introduction to Companies in Osaka

Introduction to Companies in Osaka


Rainmaking Innovation Japan LLC
Startupbootcamp SCALE Osaka

Moving Forward: Voices from Foreign Companies in Osaka during Covid-19 2020.8

Managing Director
Mr. Joshua Flannery

Hello. I’m Joshua Flannery, the Managing Director of Rainmaking Innovation Japan. Rainmaking is a global innovation firm, and our mission is to solve the world problems by unleashing entrepreneurship. We do that by 4 different types of services; innovation strategy, programs, venture building, and corporate innovation training. In Japan, we have moved into Osaka, as our first headquarters and an office. And, we’ve been working with 7 large Japanese corporations, to help solve their problems with innovation and entrepreneurship.

Like most companies around the world, Rainmaking has been impacted by Covid-19. Fortunately, for Rainmaking in Japan, we’ve had a unique situation. All of us 7 corporate partners have decided to renew both financially and their commitment to our program. We have also been able to change our service, so that we can offer 100% digital delivery using technology platforms. And that means that we are able to actually offer the same value and have the support of the Japanese partners to do so.

Since Covid-19 started, we were forced to spend most of our time doing business development using on-line. It was quite surprising and very encouraging for us. Because we found that many more Japanese executives are using on-line platforms such as business social media platforms like LinkdIn.And also, video conference like Zoom or Microsoft Teams. The combination of LinkdIn databases enable you to reach out and contact people for the first time. And then follow up with the first meeting using Zoom. About even a few years ago, I thought that we would be impossible in Japan. Because there has been such a long tradition of a protocol to follow when having the first meeting with someone from a Japanese corporation. But it seems that in Osaka and in Japan corporations are involving and adapting. And I called it “Adaptive intelligence”. And I think that is one of the strengths of the companies in Osaka. They are adapting to this new world, and we’re able to do business even more effectively than before.

Since Covid-19 hit and even before that, it has been hard to really tell for many people how possible it is really to grow your business in Japan. Especially now that is difficult to get on the plane and travel to Japan, some people may have given up. But I can tell you that we’ve had a very different experience from what you have expecting. I would suggest that you firstly don’t be afraid to start reaching out to potential partners, potential customers and even advisers, such as O-BIC or some of the other bodies that have been set up especially to help you enter the market here.

Cities like Osaka have an unusually strong business culture of collaboration. This means that they want to work startups, they wanna work with foreign business. But, sometimes, it is difficult for them to know which ones to work with or how to find them. So, I would suggest being more proactive and approaching them, maybe using some of the advice from people who’ve done it before.

Osaka city and its surrounding Kansai region is going through an exciting time right now. This is a really strong momentum for large infrastructure projects and other global events to have selected Osaka as the destination. For example, a very large scale smart city project called “Umekita” is in the works right next to Osaka station in the central business district. Other than that, there is the World Expo 2025, and a big feature that would be enabling that expo by technologies such as VR and AR. And that’s opening up opportunities for technology companies from outside to come in and offer their services to really make it a special event. So I think it is a great time to come in even with Covid-19, because government and big business in Japan really need help delivering on these projects. So, why not give it a try?

Rainmaking Innovation Japan LLC
Startupbootcamp SCALE Osaka
Establishment 2019
CEO Mr. Joshua Flannery
Business Accelerator