Tips for Starting Your Own Business In Japan
Wednesday, August 7, 2019
Osaka Innovation Hub Chat Night
On Friday July 12, the Osaka Innovation Hub (OIH) held an OIH “Chat Night,” where a small group of foreign residents in Japan who are interested in starting their own companies gathered to hear advice, have their questions answered, and get tips on how to get their businesses up and running. The CEO of Izanau's parent company Active Gaming Media, Ibai Ameztoy gave a brief speech about what it’s like running a company in Japan as a foreigner. He talked about his successes, his failures, and about how easy it is to start up a company in Japan.
Here are a few of the questions asked and their answers, paraphrased:
How do you know who to hire?
During the interview, I’ll check to see how much they really know about Japan, and if they can answer some common sense questions. For example: name as many prime ministers as you can, starting from the current one. Many people can only name Prime Minister Abe, and that will usually disqualify them.
Do you need some sort of inspiration before you can start a business?
It’s very easy to start a business. You don’t need some grand idea. Focus on the opportunities around you, what’s popular, what people want right now.
What do you find difficult about working with foreigners?
They’re used to a more lackadaisical atmosphere, and are hesitant to do anything outside of their job description. In addition, even though they’re working at a Japanese company, they’ll often ask for contracts, etc, in their native language, which takes time and resources.
After Mr. Ameztoy’s speech, the OIH went into the finer details of how to start a business in Japan. With the new start-up visa in Japan, it’s become easier than ever for foreigners to start their own business. Read more about how you can get a start-up visa here.
Osaka offers plenty of support and assistance for those looking to start a business, or foreigners who are searching for jobs in Japan. This event was just one example of the many seminars they hold. You can see more OIH events on their website.
About the Author
I've been in love with Japan since I was twelve years old. After studying at Kansei Gakuin University and teaching for three years under the protection of Mount Tate in scenic Toyama prefecture (where you'll find the most beautiful Starbucks in the world), I returned stateside to attend Kent State University to get my Masters in Japanese Translation. Now I've been given the wonderful opportunity to intern at IZANAU for what's sure to be a glorious summer.