Startup Factory Meetup Held in Osaka

A Startup Factory Meetup was held on Thursday, November 8 in Umeda, Osaka, with the objectives of building the startup ecosystem and strengthening collaborations. Around 50 people from the startup factories, startups receiving assistance from them, startup supporters with whom the startups are collaborating, and government officials, attended the event.

Startup Factories Pitches

Representatives of six businesses (TechShop Japan, Panasonic Corporation, Industrial Technology Center of Fukui Prefecture, FabFoundry, HILLTOP Co., Ltd., Kyoto University of Art and Design) that act as startup factories, providing prototyping and product design support to startups seeking to mass-produce their products, pitched their services. They introduced the contents of their businesses and their startup support systems.

Pitch presentation materials (only those made available for public release)

Keynote lecture: Challenges of Collaboration Between Hardware Startups and Manufacturers

Next, Woo-Keun Yoon, Research Scientist in the Service Robotics Research Group, Intelligent Systems Research Institute of the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), and former CEO of Life Robotics Inc., delivered a keynote lecture. Based on his own experiences, Mr. Yoon talked about the challenges and other issues that startups and their supporters needed to be aware of for the development of a hardware startup ecosystem. It was very impressive to see the participants listening intently to every word of Mr. Yoon’s passionate talk, which, while sometimes harsh, expressed great expectations for startups and their supporters.

Networking Reception

The participants later moved to a different venue for a networking reception, which included discussions and exchanges of opinions that also served as business negotiations, and pitches by startups in attendance. Lively chatter was heard in a friendly atmosphere.