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Calling for Enterprise Applicants for the "HIYAKU Next Enterprise" Programs under the Program for Supporting Mid-ranking Companies and SMEs in Creating Innovation - Leaders from medium-sized enterprises, SMEs, and venture businesses to be dispatched to five cities which are bases of global innovation, including Silicon Valley

As part of the Project for a Bridge of Innovation between Silicon Valley and Japan, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) decided to send leaders from outstanding mid-ranking companies, SMEs, and venture businesses with quality technologies and excellent business ideas to global innovation bases, including Silicon Valley. At these bases, the leaders will learn about the frameworks of venture ecosystems and approaches to the use of such ecosystems and will have opportunities to acquire knowledge and establish networks concerning business development overseas. METI hereby announces a call for enterprises to apply for these dispatch programs.

1. Outline of the Project for a Bridge of Innovation between Silicon Valley and Japan

On April 30, 2015, Prime Minister Abe announced the inauguration of the project during his visit to Silicon Valley, the United States. In response, METI has been conducting programs to take advantage of human resources, enterprises and opportunities in Silicon Valley. Through these programs, which connect entrepreneurs and leaders from enterprises in Japan to those in Silicon Valley, METI aims to establish a framework for the sustainable creation of world-class innovation in Japan.

2. Details of the overseas programs

<Group 1: Silicon Valley Course and Singapore Course>
Visit innovation bases and/or attending social exchanges with people from local enterprises and local entrepreneurs
<Group 2: Europe (Helsinki and Berlin) Course and Austin Course>
Participate in the world's largest event featuring innovative technologies and services, including South by Southwest (SXSW) Conference and Festivals, in Austin, TX, etc.
<Group 3: Israel Course>
Experience ecosystem in Israel, etc.

3. Eligibility

  • Mid-ranking companies, SMEs and venture businesses in Japan that intend to expand business overseas by taking advantage of innovative technologies or business models
  • Entrepreneurs or executive managers who are committed to overseas business development and will be able to participate in an overseas program for approximately one week and also be able to participate in meetings before the trip and follow-ups afterward; preferably, those who are able to communicate in English.

4. Number of companies to be sent

  • Around 20 companies for Silicon Valley Course
  • Around 8 companies each for four other Courses

5. Schedule

Period of the call: From July 28 (Fri) to September 15 (Fri.), 2017
Announcement of successful applicants: Late September to mid-October, 2017
Period of travel: November 2017 to March 2018

6. Expenses

METI will subsidize site visit costs.

7. To apply

8. Examination and selection

  • A selection committee of external experts will examine applications and select applicants based on the submitted applications.
  • The list of successful applicants will be made public on the METI website and the program secretariat website. The secretariat will also send a notice of the results to all applicants.

Release date

August 21, 2017

Division in Charge

New Business 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
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