MAY 2018  /  INVESTING IN JAPAN

A diverse community

On 23 May 1928, a group of 51 American businessmen founded Tokyo American Club (TAC) as an exclusive place for expatriate Americans to gather. However, over the past 90 years, the club has undergone several transformations, occupying six buildings in different locations around Tokyo. Its present home, an eight-storey complex, opened in Azabudai, Minato ward, in January 2011. It has also seen a transformation in terms of its demographics.

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“[we] offer members a user experience that fits their lifestyle and their requirements”

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MAY 2018 / THE INTERVIEW

Turning words into actions

With a career in the Danish Foreign Service spanning more than 35 years, Ambassador of Denmark to Japan Freddy Svane is adept at seizing every opportunity to strengthen ties between Denmark and Japan and encourage greater collaboration between the two nations. He is also an unflagging champion of economic diplomacy, promoting his nation’s business interests wherever he goes.

MAY 2018 / FEATURE

A fertile business

European firms are helping Japan make more babies. It shouldn’t be a surprise that a country running short of children has one of the world’s busiest fertility hospitals. The Kato Ladies Clinic in Shinjuku, central Tokyo, performs an average of 27,000 in vitro fertility (IVF) cycles per year. Dozens of women file through its operating suites every day to have their eggs stimulated, extracted, fertilised, frozen and implanted.

MAY 2018 / EBC UPDATE

Better than business as usual

Since 1999, senior executives from businesses in Japan and the EU have met annually to discuss ways of encouraging greater trade and investment. The forum, called the EU–Japan Business Round Table (BRT), boasts leaders from nearly 50 well-established multinationals, including Airbus, Bayer, IKEA and Rolls-Royce on the EU side, and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Nissan, Sony and Toshiba on the Japanese side.

APRIL 2018

APRIL 2018 / INVESTING IN JAPAN

An emerging champion

The dangers that businesses are exposed to today are more considerable and diverse than ever before. One example is the threat of large-scale, organised cybertheft, brought about by the exponential growth of the digital economy; a total of 128.1 billion cyberattacks were documented in Japan alone in 2016, according to the National Institute of Information and Communications Technology.

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APRIL 2018 / THE INTERVIEW

Taking more ground

After nearly a year in Japan, Ambassador Giorgio Starace has settled confidently into his role, enthusiastically supporting the efforts of Italian businesses here, working to strengthen political cooperation, and promoting Italian culture. He spoke with Eurobiz Japan about the remarkable increase in Italian exports to Japan, a collaboration in space, and how Italy and Japan are planning to work together to support Africa.

APRIL 2018 / FEATURE

The mission to change the world by 2030

There’s a colourful, boxy graphic making the rounds on the internet these days; it looks like a calendar or the periodic table of elements, but with simple icons. The boxes are a representation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a United Nations initiative — adopted by 192 countries at the 2012 Rio+20 conference — that is a successor to its Millennium Development Goals.

APRIL 2018 / WORK PLACE

Heineken Kirin K.K.

Heineken has been a proud sponsor of the Rugby World Cup (RWC) since 1995. “Rugby, like Heineken, is enjoyed all over the world,” says Martijn van Keulen, general manager of Heineken Kirin K.K. “At Heineken, we share the values of the RWC — respect, pride, passion and internationalism. We aim to bring enjoyment and memorable experiences to Rugby World Cup fans by providing creative and entertaining campaigns.”

MARCH 2018

MARCH 2018 / INVESTING IN JAPAN

A positive outlook

For years, Japan has been accused of not changing fast enough. Many bemoan factors such as the nation’s shrinking population, its outdated patriarchal business world and the sluggish economy. However, three directors from Bilingual Recruitment Solutions (BRS), the international arm of the recruiting giant Persol Group, have a more positive outlook.

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MARCH 2018 / THE INTERVIEW

Looking at the horizon

Since he was a boy growing up in Thessaloniki, Greece, Leonidas Karapiperis has been fascinated by science. He studied mathematical physics at the University of Sussex, and then did his PhD in microelectronics at Cornell University. After seven years of research in the private sector, Karapiperis took a position at the European Commission in 1988.

MARCH 2018 / FEATURE

The future of driving

As we embrace the age of artificial intelligence, the relationship between cars and their owners is undergoing arguably the biggest transformation since the invention of the internal combustion engine. The rapid development of vehicles that can, to differing degrees, drive themselves has been greeted with excitement and trepidation in roughly equal measure.

MARCH 2018 / EBC PERSONALITY

Antoine Bourgeois

The great blues, jazz and rock guitarists, such as Albert King, Wes Montgomery and Prince, make their instruments sing — and make it look effortless. When he was in his teens, Antoine Bourgeois, today president of Clarins Japan, wanted to know what made these musicians’ songs so good. So he appropriated his sister’s neglected guitar and taught himself how to play.

FEBRUARY 2018

FEBRUARY 2018 / INVESTING IN JAPAN

Unleashing potential

Competition is heating up for a limited talent pool of bilingual professionals to staff a booming corporate Japan. In this climate, two businesses — the bilingual arms of Japanese recruitment giant Recruit Group — serving the sector are undergoing a rebranding. On 1 April, CDS will become RGF Executive Search Japan, while RGF HR Agent Japan will become RGF Professional Recruitment Japan. These changes are aimed at clarifying their positions in the market and their service offerings for clients and candidates in Japan and across Asia.

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FEBRUARY 2018 / THE INTERVIEW

Moving to a new level

On 11 November 1868, Japan and Sweden signed a Treaty of Friendship, Navigation and Commerce, just two and a half weeks after the official start of the Meiji period. This year marks 150 years of formal diplomatic relations between the two countries. Swedish Ambassador to Japan Magnus Robach sat down with Eurobiz Japan to speak about what’s planned for this special anniversary year.

FEBRUARY 2018 / FEATURE

Winds of change

Japan’s wind power industry is getting ready to soar. International and domestic players are introducing new technology and investing in a greater deployment of wind energy. Now it is up to the Japanese government to get the legal and environmental framework in place to help this sector take wing.

FEBRUARY 2018 / EBC PERSONALITY

Leif Nilsson

In northern Sweden, there is a small town called Lycksele that is frequently treated to the dazzling light shows of the Aurora Borealis. Leif Nilsson, general manager for Asia–Pacific at Scandinavian Airlines (SAS), was fortunate enough to grow up beneath this radiant spectacle.

JANUARY 2018

JANUARY 2018 / INVESTING IN JAPAN

Bon appétit

Imagine a scheme that boosts productivity, employee health and loyalty; costs just ¥200–¥300 a day; and is essentially tax free. Surely employers would jump at the chance to sign on the dotted line, particularly those in a country facing chronic personnel shortages and productivity levels that lag those of its OECD rivals. Edenred believes it has just such a solution for Japan in its Ticket Restaurant offering of lunch support for employees.

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JANUARY 2018 / THE INTERVIEW

A labour of love

In 1991, Slovenia became an independent country. Simona Leskovar, who is ambassador to Japan today, was part of the first generation of independent Slovenians attending university. After graduating from the international relations programme at the University of Ljubljana, she joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs — the first step to fulfilling her childhood dream of representing Slovenia around the world.

JANUARY 2018 / FEATURE

The omnichannel experience

No doubt to the disappointment of many British children, Toys “R” Us announced at the end of 2017 the closure of a third of its stores in the UK, putting hundreds of jobs at risk. Earlier, the American retailer had filed for bankruptcy in the US and Canada, with industry observers citing its losing battle with online rivals such as Amazon.com.

JANUARY 2018 / EBC PERSONALITY

Joaquin Martori

India’s festival of colour, Holi, is a vibrant celebration of good over evil, where people throw coloured powder and spray water at one another. With its origins in the Hindu legend of the god Vishnu defeating the demoness Holika, this national holiday is a time to forgive and forget, make new friends and welcome the arrival of spring.

JANUARY 2018 / COUNTRY SPOTLIGHT

Belgium and Luxembourg

The 1872 novel A Dog of Flanders, by English author Marie Louise de la Ramée, struck a chord with readers in Japan on its release, and is considered a children’s classic here. Set in Antwerp, Belgium, this tragic story of a boy and his dog was made into a popular anime series in 1975 and has also seen several Japanese film adaptations.

DECEMBER 2017

DECEMBER 2017 / INVESTING IN JAPAN

Pole position

Get behind the wheel of a Porsche Panamera 4 E-Hybrid and you’ll notice a small wheel within the steering wheel. Turn this driving-mode dial to Sport Plus and your seatbelt will automatically tighten, and the engine will growl when you give it gas. It’s as if this hybrid hatchback is daring you to question its sports car credentials.

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DECEMBER 2017 / THE INTERVIEW

An advocate of diversity

For nearly four years, His Excellency Dr Hans Carl von Werthern has been ambassador of Germany to Japan, working to strengthen political dialogue, economic cooperation and cultural exchange between the two like-minded nations. He spoke with Eurobiz Japan about new collaborations in high-tech between Germany and Japan, the importance of marching in this year’s Tokyo Rainbow Pride Parade, and the best response to rising populism.

DECEMBER 2017 / FEATURE

First to 5G

One numeral. One letter. But combined, they stand for a revolution in wireless communication, lavishing smartphones with high-speed connections and changing the way we watch, listen and interact on the go. But fifth-generation mobile technology — or simply 5G — is about more than personal entertainment.

DECEMBER 2017 / BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT

On a quest to meet unmet needs

King Arthur sought the Holy Grail; Captain Ahab the White Whale; and Dorothy the Wizard of Oz. German pharmaceutical firm Boehringer Ingelheim is also on a quest, or, rather, a number of concurrent quests — to find unmet medical needs and develop effective treatments for them.

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