JETRO Global Connection -Accelerate Innovation with Japan-

Pitch program by Japanese municipality, corporations and startups at Latitude59

(Japan, Estonia)

JETRO has joined as the new sponsor organization of Latitude59External site: a new window will open and will hold a pitch program on August 28 and share information on Japan’s startup ecosystem and the needs and activities of Japanese companies.

Pitch program by Japanese municipality, corporations and startups
“Japan’s Startup Ecosystem and Innovation in the New Normal Era”

Date and time: August 28, 2020, 9:30-10:45 (GMT+3)
Venue: Yellow Stage at Latitude59 (and live online streaming via Talque)

Contents of the pitch program
  1. Talk about open innovation activities and initiatives for foreign startup support.
  2. Corporations share their needs for solutions from foreign startups for their problems and how they would like to collaborate with them.
  3. Startups will give an overview of their products and services and explain how they would like to expand their business in Estonia and Europe.
Speakers and Pitch titles
Attend if you are
  • Startup interested in collaborating with Japanese corporations
  • Investor interested in Japanese startups
  • People who would like to learn about Japan’s startup ecosystems
  • And any others who have an interest in this pitching program!
You are cordially welcome to join us, we hope this event will become a catalyst for open innovation between Japan and Nordic countries!


The Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) is a government-related organization promoting mutual trade and investment between Japan and the rest of the world. One of our main activities is accelerating open innovation between Japanese corporations and foreign startups. In order to address social problems within Japan, JETRO bridges Japanese corporations and foreign startups who have cutting-edge technologies and disruptive business strategies by offering opportunities for foreign startups to attend Japanese exhibitions or dispatching Japanese delegations to countries where there are advanced startup ecosystems. Due to the coronavirus, many of JETRO’s above activities are organized online this year.

Japan’s open innovation and startup ecosystems

Digital transformation has recently accelerated around the globe, and this trend has added momentum to open innovation in Japan. Regarding various issues which Japan, as well as the world, are facing, Japanese companies are actively working on solutions through collaboration with domestic and overseas startups and technology-oriented companies with advanced know-how and new business models.

The Japanese government has set out policies such as “Society 5.0,” as well as digital transformation (DX) of society. The definition of “Society 5.0” is “A human-centred society that balances economic advancement with the resolution of social problems by a system that highly integrates cyberspace and physical space.” In order to achieve these policies, the Japanese government is supporting innovation created by Japanese companies and activities of startups. During recent years, many municipalities and corporations in Japan are active in open innovation. There are a number of open innovation programs organized by the municipalities or corporate venture capital (CVC) firms.

The role of JETRO is supporting open innovation activities between Japan and foreign countries, as well as startups aiming to expand their businesses abroad. And in addition to supporting foreign companies that aim to set up business in or with Japan, JETRO also takes part in the J-Startup project, which aims to help Japanese startups win in the global market and bring new value to the world, together with the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) and the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO).

This July, the Japanese government chose four urban areas as “global startup cities” in a program in which it aims to create Japan’s own versions of Silicon Valley in the US. The selected four areas are the Greater Tokyo Area, including Yokohama and Tsukuba; the Chubu region centering on Aichi Prefecture; the Kansai region containing Osaka, Kyoto and Kobe cities; and Fukuoka City in western Japan. Startup ecosystems in Japan are growing and becoming more acknowledged globally in recent years. Startup Genome, a company specializing in the analysis of startup ecosystems, ranked Tokyo 15th in “The Global Startup Ecosystem Ranking 2020.” And StartupBlink, the world’s most comprehensive startup ecosystem map and research center, ranked Tokyo 16th in the “Cities Global Ranking of Startup Ecosystem” in 2020.

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