Setting up Proper Framework for Business Practices and Logistics
Mr. Yoshitomi studied the basics of trade in
his university years and spent the next 36 years working on
imports and exports for a variety of firms (medium sized trading
company, pigment manufacturer, and precision machine part
trading company）. He has therefore broad experience in
overseas business. To put all of this practical experience and
his network of contacts to use and provide "one-stop"
support for overseas business, he set up PROEYES in November
In practice, in overseas business, the important thing is how to
most efficiently and economically get through the negotiations,
contract signing, and settlement for deals and through the
shipment, customs clearance, and delivery of the products. Mr.
Yoshitomi provides overall trade consulting services with an
emphasis on business practices and logistics. If requested by
the customer, he will also act as the agent for import or export
procedures or translate documentation. His strength lies in his
network of contacts among forwarders (chartering agents, sea and
air cargo freight forwarders, customs brokers, shipping and
landing agents, international logistics firms, etc.) and
shipping companies (sea cargo, air cargo, courier service, etc.）
- 10 partners in all. These partners include both Japanese and
foreign firms aiming at global expansion of their businesses.
Mr. Yoshitomi arranges for the most suitable partners from among
them in view of cost, speed, and type of service.
The trading company where Mr. Yoshitomi used to work was one of
JETRO Members, so he has been observing the TTPP since its
startup and registered his own proposal at the TTPP so as to
develop new customers early after setting up his own firm. From
the start, the reaction has been good, so he does not use any
Your Easy to Use One Stop for
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Points in Support Services for Overseas Business are Avoidance of Risks
As of July 2005, Mr. Yoshitomi
received a total of about 100 inquiries per month from the TTPP
and his own website. Of this, about 10% consisted of inquiries
from the TTPP automatic matching service. When he first
registered his services, most of the inquiries came from abroad,
but inquiries from Japan have been on the rise since his
services were covered in the TTPP's section on "Overseas
Business Support for Japanese Companies" (Japanese language
version only) in March 2005.
On the overseas side, Mr. Yoshitomi was asked by an Argentine
handbag maker to find it a sales agent in Japan. He met with the
head of that firm's international division on December 2004 upon
the latter's visit to Japan and signed a long-term contract for
market studies and assistance in establishing an import and
supply chain. In April 2005, Mr. Yoshitomi was asked to provide
support to a South Korean IT company for its entry into Japan.
In both cases, Mr. Yoshitomi agreed to work on a contingency
basis, but the initial costs incurred for advance studies and
preparations for marketing are supposed to be borne by the two
sides as decided by later negotiations.
On the Japanese side, Mr. Yoshitomi arranges transportation
under controlled temperature for regular exports of Japanese
sake by 20 foot refrigerated containers.
Overseas business has its attendant risks. To reduce these
risks, Mr. Yoshitomi naturally makes it a practice to meet with
the other party as much as possible and he advises his clients
to meet overseas customers. What must be particularly watched
for, he emphasizes, is risk management becoming lax upon regular
business following an initial problem-free transaction. Mr.
Yoshitomi sends out a twice-monthly newsletter on export and
import practices and trade terminology. He began doing this at
the request of young employees of forwarders who he was
surprised to find lacked in-depth knowhow about trade. At the
present time, he is also sending the newsletter to clients,
partners, and trade insurance companies. This helps him to build
up his network of contacts.