Be the first penguin in Shibuya

Photo by topcools tee on Unsplash

As Shibuya Startup Support (SSS) announced, Shibuya city started providing the 1-year startup visa for entrepreneurs planning to launch a business for the following fields :

  • Health, Medical, Welfare
  • Environment/Energy
  • Food/Agriculture/Forestry/Fisheries
  • Information Technologies
  • Culture/Art
  • Fashion

Startup Welcome Service (SWS) will support the seamless support including startup visa application, incorporation process and introduction to mentors in order to successfully launch a business in Shibuya.

These Startup Supports are the brand new initiative, and we are looking forward to meet entrepreneurs who can take challenges to build it together.

With practical experiences

All startup cities offer the similar services, but we will make Startup Welcome Service (SWS) special based on all the practical experiences that we went through with entrepreneurs/startups/business owners in Japan.

We are not just “consultants” connecting people and assigning administrative processes to different government offices, but we are the most supportive escort runners for startups landing Shibuya.

Spirit of SSS members

Without the similar experience, we cannot feel the same.

One of the greatest assets of SSS is the members, Global Ambassadors and Special Advisors from startup world. The Leader has served as the Vice President in a venture company after setting up a NPO and working as a board member at a startup. The Mayor of Shibuya has established a NPO to clean up the community.

I remember on the first day I met them, they said “Even Japanese people do not want to go through this tedious process to launch a legal entity. This is just too much for non-Japanese speakers.”

We can feel the same.

Lesson in 2020

Instead of theoretically study the incorporation+immigration processes, I DID all with international entrepreneurs/startups/SMEs. Quantitatively I

  • visited immigration bureau over 20 times
  • got involved with incorporation process for 10 companies.
    2 out of 10 were General Associations.
  • processed loan and subsidy applications

I started my business as a sole-proprietor, and launched a KK to grow further. I visited 3 offices to launch my KK, change social insurance status, tried to open bank accounts — 2 banks accepted, the other 2 rejected — now hiring some staffs, taking care of their social insurance enrollment and calculating their salary.

Now I say “I know the process” because I also went through everything — just like you did. I will pass these acquired knowledge to you when need be.

Unusual immigration procedures

Immigration process has been even more complicated.

During the covid-19 period, I visited Immigration Bureau in Shinagawa over 20 times with my clients. All of them successfully received Residential Status, and nobody was kicked out from Japan up until now. All worked out because entrepreneurs/startups/business owners around me decided to take the new challenge together.

Each country has different border closure measures. The process and the timeline depends on the travel restriction between Japan and each country. Special treatments were available, but that’s not applicable for everybody.

This unusual process will last for a while until all people get vaccinated and we are all free to travel again. Nobody knows when the borders open up again yet. Although there are still too many unknown process for immigration, we will confidently say — we will make the best effort to guide you through the Startup Visa process — because we secured everyone’s status during covid-19.

Photo by Ray Hennessy on Unsplash

Now jump!

Be the first penguin in Shibuya. Fear comes when we enter the unknown/unstable/unestablished world, but we just need to take the first step instead of being petrified.

Please jump into Shibuya to accelerate your business when the borders open.

While you are jumping into Shibuya, I will study how VC and investment work in Japan — these fields are something that I or my company haven’t gone through, so I will appreciate if I can also learn from your startup journey.

After you are settled, let’s raise the next generations.

The next story is yours.

Photo by Martin Wettstein on Unsplash

Startup Work Inc.