August 10, 2021
The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) has selected Regional Fish Institute, Ltd. as a winner of the METI Minister's Award under the Award for Academic Startups 2021 program.
1. Outline of the Award for Academic Startups 2021
Since its inauguration in FY2014, the Award for Academic Startups program has been honoring promising, excellent university-developed startups selected from among venture businesses that make use of the research outcomes achieved by universities and other institutions (national universities, private universities, colleges of technology, research and development institutions under the national government and local governments, national research and development agencies, and non-profit corporations including public interest corporations). The program also honors universities, companies, and other entities that have contributed to the growth of such startups.
The program aims to further promote the establishment of businesses that make use of R&D outcomes achieved by universities or other entities, encourage startups to innovate further, and encourage universities and companies to support university-developed startups.
The secretariat of the program called for applicants for the FY2021 program from March 29 (Mon.) to May 17 (Mon.), 2021, and 38 applications were received. The Screening Committee comprised of external experts for the Award for Academic Startups (Appendix 2) examined the application documents and held interviews with the applicants. Following this screening, six university-developed startups and the universities and companies supporting them were selected as winners. For details of the winners, see Appendix 1 and visit the website for the Award for Academic Startups program (in Japanese) (URL).
2. Outline of the winners and the award (For details, see Appendix 1.)
○ Winner of the METI Minister's Award
- Startup: Regional Fish Institute, Ltd.
- Supporting university: Graduate School of Agriculture, Kyoto University
- Supporting company: Ebara Corporation
Regional Fish Institute, Ltd. is a startup developed by Kyoto University that aims to transform the Japanese aquatic industry by building a next-generation aquaculture system that combines the breeding of aquatic products and smart aquaculture.
With "Fish for future, For the people, For our planet" as its concept, it is working on breeding aquatic products (such as fish and shellfish).
Unlike agricultural and livestock products, almost no breeding is done with aquatic products. Therefore, the startup has shortened the time required for breeding from about 30 years to two to four using genome editing technology to realize "high-speed breeding." It is also working with academia, technology-based companies, and local stakeholders to accelerate R&D and business development under the open innovation initiative.
It is boldly pioneering new markets as an open-innovation university-developed startup involving a number of universities and businesses in areas major companies have never entered before. Its work in this regard has received high praise. The company is expected to create new markets and grow significantly in the future.
- Appendix 1: List of the winners of the Award for Academic Startups 2021 Program (in Japanese)(PDF:65KB)
- Appendix 2: List of members of the screening committee of the Award for Academic Startups 2021 Program (in Japanese)(PDF:75KB)
- Reference: Outline of the Award for Academic Startups 2021 (in Japanese)(PDF:98KB)
Division in Charge
Industry-University Collaboration Office, Industrial Science and Technology Policy and Environment Bureau