India-Japan startup hub aims to foster collaboration between two countries

The National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom), in collaboration with the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO) and Indian Institute of Management Bangalore (IIMB), hosted Japan’s Minister of Economy Trade and Industry Hiroshige Seko as the keynote speaker of the India-Japan Startup Hub Seminar this week.

The idea of the India-Japan Startup Hub was conceived in 2017, and announced in a joint statement by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe. The India Japan Startup Hub will serve as a platform to promote information exchange, business collaboration, and investments between the startup ecosystems of two countries.

As a part of the seminar, Hiroshige Seko highlighted the initiatives that would be taken up through the Startup Hub. He also elaborated on Japan’s market potential for Indian startups to strategise their business plans in alignment with the Japanese market.

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On the sidelines of the seminar, KK Natarajan, Member, Chairmen Council, Nasscom said, “In recent times, we have forged a strong, symbiotic relationship with the Japanese ecosystem through tech and new-age alliances which have advantaged us both immensely. The digital revolution has ushered in a wealth of opportunities for co-innovation and co-creation between Indian and Japanese start-ups that are brimming with new ideas. We look forward to being part of the bilateral legacy that they will create.”

Hiroshige Seko said, “Under the flagship initiative of ‘Startup India’, I would like Indian startups, who have strength in software, to work together to tackle challenges in Japan. At the same time, I would like Japanese companies to consider investing in Indian startups. By this two-way investment, I would like to build up cooperation for mutual benefit. To realize this, we have decided to establish a ‘startup hub’ here in Bengaluru, for the first time in the world, as an interface to facilitate startup collaboration and two-way investment.”

He added, “Nasscom is an essential partner to support the hub. In February 2017, it agreed on a Memorandum of Understanding for IoT cooperation with the IoT Acceleration Consortium (ITAC) comprised of Japanese industry, government, and academia, in order to promote productive cooperation as we enter the IoT and AI age, through exchanging information and facilitating mutual visits.”

With assistance from METI of Japan, Nasscom also has previously organized CEATEC 2017 (Combined Exhibition of Advanced Technologies) for Indian start-ups companies from the IoT and Analytics space to collaborate and co-create.

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