Getting funds from Japanese financial institutions is hard and tedious work. (Photo by Tim Evans on Unsplash)

The Client

A technology startup bringing innovations with IoT including solutions such as so-called Smart Delivery, Smart Parking and Smart Lock. The client was looking to receive loans to kick-start its marketing efforts.

The Project

The startup founder, despite having lived and worked in Japan for over 15 years and speaking fluent Japanese, he had faced tremendous difficulty approaching potential investors in Japan. While well-trained as a senior engineer and innovator in the IT sector, the founder had little experience and virtually no connections within the Japanese financial services sector.

Cyest helped connect the client with a former executive in our network from MUFG – the largest financial group of Japan. A pre-engagement interview was conducted with the expert for the CEO, where Cyest expert pointed out different ways to get a loan in Japan and outline how he would be able to help realize the desired goal.

Over a span of six months, Cyest expert has helped the startup CEO to:

  • review and give advice to improve the 5-year business plan and the term sheet that meet standards of Japanese financial institutions
  • arrange and accompany the CEO at meetings with financial institutions, lending credence that helped speed up the negotiation process
  • find out about a government grant scheme for entrepreneurship in Japan, prepare and submit an application

The grant application was a success. The granted fund was then used as a much-needed guarantee that aided the startup to obtain a secured loan from one of the megabanks in Japan. The CEO could not have thought of this unconventional way to achieve what’s considered a rare accomplishment for a small and young startup in Japan.

The Expert

Former Deputy General Manager of Asia and China Division at MUFG (Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group) with 30 years of experience heading efforts in business development, FX hedging, restructuring non-performing loans, system integration, etc both domestically in Tokyo HQ and overseas in MUFG Singapore and Jakarta.

Former Partner for Japan Desk at KPMG Indonesia.

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