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October 28, 2015 at Akihabara UDX

At Akihabara UDX on October 28, 2015, TEP held the TECH STARTUP SUMMIT, which focuses on technology startup companies that are trying to expand their business by leveraging their technical ability. The event featured a talk by Yuya Nakamura, president and CEO of Axelspace Corporation, which recently raised 1.8 billion yen in series A funding in September 2015, and a panel discussion on the theme of "Bringing Japanese Deep Tech Startups to the World," which was moderated by Professor Takashi Iwamoto of Keio Business School (KBS) and co-sponsored by Euglena Investment Co., Ltd. and Global Brain Corporation, which focus on supporting technology startup companies as Japanese venture capital firms.
The summit was also reported on by our media partner, Forbes Japan.

See the following link for details.
- Forbes Japan: "What are the conditions required for startups to grow?"


"Growth and Support of Technology Startups" by Shingo Kokudo (TEP chairman)

TEP chairman Shingo Kokudo talked about the history of TEP, which celebrates its sixth year this November, and the requirements that TEP has identified for the growth of technology startups. An excerpt of his presentation is indicated below.

■ Features of TEP
- Supports technology startups that target technology as their core business competence
- Building the entire ecosystem required by technology startups and providing comprehensive support focused on the hands-on assistance of angels
- 100% of angels have experienced corporate management and about half again have experienced the founding of a company

■ Specific examples of support
NS Materials Inc., a technology transfer venture of the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology
- Develops nanoparticle materials for the environmental industry, such as nanophosphors for LED light sources
-After a consultation meeting in 2010, spent about half a year to transform the business model together with a TEP angel
- After that, TEP provided comprehensive assistance for business planning, capital procurement, overseas partnerships, and sales route development.
- In July 2015, started construction of a large-scale factory and announced strengthening of relations with a TEP Corporate Member

"The Journey So Far and Future Outlook" by Yuya Nakamura (president and CEO of Axelspace Corporation)

In September 2015, Axelspace Corporation secured series A funding of 1.8 billion yen, and thereby received great attention in the startup industry. This company that conducts development and operation of microsatellites has been supported mainly by TEP angels since its founding. This article describes the history of how the company has grown.

See this link for the story of TEP supporting Axelspace Corporation:

"Bringing Japanese Deep Tech Startups to the World" Panel Discussion

As we can see from examples overseas, although startups are an effective and efficient tool of creating new industries, the fact of the matter is that they do not adequately function in Japan. The country now desperately needs industry restructuring, and startups should be utilized as a tool for creating new industries. However, Japan is far behind in terms of speed and the cultivation of an entrepreneurial culture when compared to places such as the United States, China, India, and Israel. This panel discussion focused on identifying and discussing the strengths of Japan that can be leveraged to counter this situation.

Moderator: Takashi Iwamoto (Keio Business School (KBS) project professor)
Panel members: Yuya Nakamura (president and CEO of Axelspace Corporation)
Hidetaka Aoki (venture partner of Global Brain Corporation)
Akihiko Nagata (director of Euglena Investment Co., Ltd.)
Masaru Murai (director of TEP)
Shingo Kokudo (chairman of TEP)

Talk Themes (1)
Status of deep tech startup foundation/investment
- Status of deep tech startup foundation in Japan
- Comparison with the global investment environment
- What startups require to grow at the seed and early stages

Talk Themes (2)
Outlook for Japanese deep tech startups
- Potential of Japanese deep tech startups from the perspective of venture capital firms
- What deep tech startups require to grow

What Are Deep Tech Startups?

Venture investment has been active in the startup industry in the past few years. According to the 2013 White Paper on Information and Communications in Japan from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, domestic venture capital investment started recovering from its several-year downward trend in 2010, and venture investment in the seed stage is particularly enthusiastic. Japan is also seeing a trend in increasing numbers of IPOs. The Abe administration also focuses on venture company support in its growth strategy.

The growth of IT startup companies is particularly remarkable due to the popularization of tablet devices, and many venture capital firms and operating companies have invested in IT-related startup companies across the board.
On the other hand, deep tech startups, which have technology as their core business competence, take years to grow their business compared to IT-related venture companies. Since they require a large amount of capital investment, their return on investment is poor, and they are high risk, so venture capital firms have been reluctant to invest.

However, since the growth of IT-related startup companies has been to a certain extent established, the global market is starting to focus on deep tech startups, which expand their business based on core technologies.

The technology of Japanese manufacturing has been recognized globally for many years. Even now, many of the companies that appeared after the Second World War, such as automobile and home appliance manufacturers, have a strong brand presence in the global market. TEP's global network of 26 members in 21 countries over the world now have high hopes for the technological ability of Japanese startup companies.

Since technology can easily generate worldwide value and there is a large market for such products, it will be more common for technology companies to target the global market from the beginning than it is for IT and smartphone services. Despite this, there are still few examples of Japanese deep tech startups active in the global market, and the ecosystem to support those startups is just now starting to be formed.

We believe that this TECH STARTUP SUMMIT has delivered an opportunity to think about the growth of Japanese technology venture companies from various points of view. TEP will continue to build a good ecosystem for supporting the technology venture companies of Japan.

(End of report)


This event focuses on technology startups that utilize the technical ability of Japan as their core business competence, and enables participants to exchange opinions regarding the challenges, strengths, and future outlook of technology startups in Japan, from the perspectives of venture companies, angel investors, and venture capital firms.

As an example of a technology startup, the event features Axelspace Corporation, which has been supported by a TEP angel investor since its foundation and recently secured series A funding of 1.8 billion yen, which is rare in Japan. There will also be an appearance by Global Brain Corporation, the lead investor of Axelspace Corporation. Don't miss this valuable chance to find out about the history of this technology startup!

Date/time: October 28, 2015 (Wed) from 13:00
Location: Conference Room ABC, 6F Akihabara UDX South Wing (4-14-1 Sotokanda, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo) Access information
12:30: Reception open
13:00-13:05: Introduction to the TECH STARTUP SUMMIT
13:05-13:15: Talk: “Growth and Support of Technology Startups” by Shingo Kokudo (TEP chairman)

13:15-13:45: Special talk: "The Journey So Far and Future Outlook" by Yuya Nakamura (president and CEO of Axelspace Corporation)
Born in Mie Prefecture in 1979. Completed a doctoral degree in aerospace engineering at the University of Tokyo. Involved in the development of microsatellites while a student, and established Axelspace Corporation in 2008. Axelspace Corporation is a startup developing microsatellites that has been supported by TEP from its foundation, and in September 2015, the company secured series A funding of 1.8 billion yen, which is rare in Japan.

13:45-15:15 Panel discussion: "Bringing Japanese Deep Tech Startups to the World"
Moderator: Takashi Iwamoto (Keio Business School (KBS) project professor)
Panel members: Yuya Nakamura (president and CEO of Axelspace Corporation)
Hidetaka Aoki (venture partner of Global Brain Corporation)
Akihiko Nagata (director of Euglena Investment Co., Ltd.)
Masaru Murai (director of TEP)
Shingo Kokudo (chairman of TEP)

15:15-16:30 Get-together

Entrance fee: Free
Capacity: 150 (entry will be closed when capacity is reached)
Application method:
Make an application from the ticket sales website Peatix ( or
Send an e-mail indicating your (1) Name, (2) Affiliation, and (3) Job position, with "TECH STARTUP SUMMIT Application" as the title to this address.(





協力:茨城県、柏市、つくば市、株式会社つくば研究支援センター、国立研究開発法人 産業技術総合研究所、国立大学法人 筑波大学、一般社団法人 つくばグローバル・イノベーション推進機構、宇宙航空研究開発機構(JAXA)

Media Partner:

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