Introducing Japan NYC Startups

This week we want to share with you an exciting new community that has been growing between New York and Tokyo. A number of Japanese startups have opened offices in NYC as they have moved globally and Japan NYC Startups have created a space for startups in the two cities to connect.

Japan NYC Startups is a global community focused on bridging Japanese and American technology ecosystems.

How many NYC-based startups do you know? Moreover, do you know any NYC-based startups run by Japanese engineers or entrepreneurs?

We are a community of technologists, founders, engineers, and startup people in New York City. Our goal is to bridge the Japanese and American technology ecosystems by bringing entrepreneurs and business leaders together to share their collective knowledge and experiences.

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We got started this February, when my two co-organizers Yu Imaoka and Masa Okunishi got together with an idea for a new meetup to bring together the Japanese and NYC tech communities. I teamed up with them at the first event, and we are now hosting our 5th meetup this month. Each event features a speaker who shares their experiences and learnings. Recently, Kosuke Fujitaka spoke about the challenges of bringing SmartNews to the US Market, Adam Gries of OKPanda talked about targeting Japan, and Tim Romero joined us to give a remote Q&A session about all things Japanese startup.

We’re happy to count companies like SmartNews, Peatix, and NuLab among our members, in addition to some new ventures.

The community of Japanese startups in NYC is small but growing. We’re happy to count companies like SmartNews, Peatix, and NuLab among our members, in addition to some new ventures. With its global ties and large community of Japanese expatriates, NYC has become an attractive place for Japanese entrepreneurs expanding to a US office or starting a new business. According to Startup Compass, after Silicon Valley, NYC has the world’s second strongest startup ecosystem, with top talent from a variety of industries and wide availability of funding.

With our meetups, we strive to foster learning about both the Japanese and American markets, delivering information to our members through great speakers and events. But more importantly, we are creating a space – both virtual and physical here in NYC – where a cross-cultural tech scene can form.

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The long-term vision of our community is to create a living extension of Japan’s startup ecosystem here in NYC, integrated with the local tech scene. We hope to see programs to bring Japanese founders and talent to the rich tech community here, deep ties between successful American startups and new Japanese ones, and the encouragement and participation of both NYC local government and Japanese government. This meetup is the first step toward the realization of a Japanese global startup hub in this city. If you’re interested in helping make this vision a reality, please get in touch with me and my co-organizers. And if you’re planning a visit to NYC, let us know on our our Facebook group – you’ll find that you’ll be welcome here!

Thank you guys! Let’s make some event together in the future!
If you are interested in NY Japanese Startup community, please contact Toby Shorin on their Facebook group!


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Riccardo Parenti

Italian. Art Director, interaction design enthusiast, occasionally photographer. Riccardo is the founder the TGD community, starting the LinkedIn group when he first moved to Japan in 2010. He is also a volunteer for Behance Tokyo. He loves to spend his free time seeking and exploring abandoned buildings in the Japanese countryside.

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