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Outstanding Case Examples Determined and Recognized under the Contest for Female Entrepreneurs Support Efforts

On January 11(Thur.), 2018, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry(METI) held its first contest titled "Contest for Female Entrepreneurs Support Efforts" to recognize outstanding case examples of organizations engaging in efforts to support women in starting businesses. This contest aims to create new leading methods to support female entrepreneurs and to spread such methods to other regions.

1. Background

Many women in Japan often face gender-based challenges in starting businesses when they wish to return to economic life after a period of maternity or child-rearing leave. Many of the challenges lie in processes that must be completed before they decide on, or begin preparations for starting a business.

To overcome this situation, in FY2016, METI launched "the Network for Support Female Entrepreneurs" project, aimed to support women in starting businesses. Under the project, METI established ten regional groups involved in the network across Japan. Each regional group is led by regional financial institutions, industrial and start-up support organizations, and private entities and NPOs engaging in female-career consulting services. Along with operating an enhanced system to support women in the processes that are necessary before deciding on and preparing to start a business, the network has established a cross-regional support system for entrepreneurial women and has been providing thorough support services catering to their needs(e.g., acting as a bridge between such women and financial institutions).

In FY2017, METI held its first contest titled the "Contest for Support Female Entrepreneurs" to recognize outstanding case examples which were born out of support efforts in the network project. This contest aims to create new leading methods to support women in starting up businesses and to spread such methods to other regions as successful outcomes of the network project.

At the contest held on January 11(Thur.), 2018, candidate support organizations that passed the first examination(document screening) made presentations concerning key points of their support efforts, and the examination committee of external experts examined the efforts based on four criteria:[i]collaboration,[ii]pacesetting,[iii]wide area coverage, and[iv]regionality. Based on the results of the examination, METI selected the winners of the contest, and held a commendation ceremony.

2. Winners of the contest(results of the contest)

The Comprehensive Category:
In this category, METI recognizes outstanding case examples of support organizations that have been comprehensively evaluated and won high scores regarding the four examination criteria:[i]collaboration,[ii]pacesetting,[iii]wide area coverage, and[iv]regionality.

Grand Awards

Presenter
(organization to support women in starting businesses)

Network group to which the presenter belongs

Watashi Plus, Sapporo-the Youth and Women Actions Association

Hokkaido

Fukushima Prefecture Venture Businesses, SOHOs, Teleworkers Collaborative Organization

Tohoku

Excellence Awards

Presenter
(organization to support women in starting businesses)

Network group to which the presenter belongs

Osaka Urban Industry Promotion Center

Kansai

Chugoku New Business Conference

Chugoku

Okinawa Business Incubation Plaza

Okinawa

The Individual Category:
In this category, METI recognizes outstanding case examples of support efforts that have won high scores in the four examination criteria:[i]collaboration,[ii]pacesetting,[iii]coverage of wide area, and[iv]regionality.

Presenter
(organization to support women in starting businesses)

Network group to which the presenter belongs

Title of awards

Watarakushia Co., Ltd.

Hokkaido

Collaboration Award, Wide Area Award

Bizhope

Kanto

Pacesetting Award, Regionality Award

Global Mama Gateway Corporation

Chubu

Pacesetting Award

G & S

Hokuriku

Pacesetting Award, Wide Area Award

Osaka Shinkin Bank

Kansai

Collaboration Award

Work Life Collabo

Shikoku

Pacesetting Award

Note:For details of the winners, see the Appendix attached to the Japanese language press release.

3. Future actions

METI will compile the case examples recognized at the contest into a collection of know-how and key points to support women in starting businesses and will strive to spread the case examples across Japan for such support.

Appendix

Release date

January 16, 2018

Division in Charge

Economic and Social Policy Office, Economic and Industrial Policy Bureau

Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry1-3-1 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8901, Japan Tel: +81-(0)3-3501-1511
Copyright Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. All Rights Reserved.