Executive Interview: Japan Housing Finance Agency

President Seiichi ShimadaSeiichi ShimadaBy Sarah Noorbakhsh -- J@pan Inc talks with President Seiichi Shimada about the current state of Japan’s housing and real estate markets -- Once a government organization, in April 2007 the Japan Housing Finance Agency (JHF) was established as an Incorporated Administrative Agency under then Prime Minister Koizumi’s plan to privatize government services. The organization is now the first to offer Mortgage-Backed Securities (MBS) in Japan.


Exclusive Interview: Dr Greg Story

Dr Greg StoryDr Greg StoryBy Peter Harris -- J@pan Inc talks to the Chairman of the Australian New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan -- The Australian Chamber was founded in 1972 but then, in around 1990, the New Zealand (NZ) embassy approached the Chamber and suggested a tie-up with the NZ business community. In the spirit of ANZAC, this idea was embraced and seemed to make sense on a number of cooperative levels. The Chamber is fully independent although it enjoys the support of both the embassies; for example, they help bring us leading politicians as speakers and help out with providing venues.


Executive Interview: Peter Massion, Henkel Japan

Peter MassionPeter MassionBy Anna Kitanaka -- J@pan Inc talks to Peter Massion, President & CFO -- For Japan, the majority of our revenue is in industrial adhesives, sealants and surface technologies which are sold through Henkel Japan and Cemedine Henkel. The industrial area is the major focus for Henkel and where we want to be stronger and better positioned in the Japanese market. -- Another key market is the hair care segment, where Henkel is active in both consumer retail and professional hair care. Both sectors are very competitive, and unfortunately in the recent past have experienced more or less overall stagnant industry growth.


Exclusive Interview: Philip Greenan

Philip GreenanPhilip Greenan By Peter Harris -- J@pan Inc talks to the Vice President of the Ireland Japan Chamber of Commerce. -- The Irish corporate landscape is very much shaped by the global economy. A lot of multinational companies choose to have their European headquarters in Ireland, and as a result, many Irish-Japanese connections have occurred naturally in the course of economic globalization. Ireland has also proactively sought to cultivate Irish people with Japanese language and business skills.


CEO Interview: Fabrizio Lavezzari

Fabrizio LavezzariFabrizio Lavezzari By Peter Harris -- Fabrizio Lavezzari, Representative Director, Presidio Japan KK -- Please can you tell us about the Armani Exchange (AX) brand? -- The basic concept of the brand is young, urban and sexy—there is a strong association with music and the club scene. Not only do we produce CDs mixed by popular Djs from New York or London, we also put on clubby events inside stores. While there is a healthy overlap between the Armani brands, we have to be careful to avoid brand cannibalization and make sure that our coverage is broad and seamlessly segmented.


Exclusive Interview: Ian de Stains

Ian de Stains: Executive Director of the British Chamber of Commerce in JapanIan de StainsBy Peter Harris -- J@pan Inc talks to the Executive Director of the British Chamber of Commerce in Japan -- How do Anglo-Japanese trade relations stand at present? The trade and investment flows are very strong. A little under 50% of Japan’s investment into Europe goes into Britain. This has been the case throughout the latter part of the last century but the nature of that investment has changed.


Exclusive Interview: Michel Lachaussée

Michel LachausséeMichel LachausséeBy Peter Harris -- J@pan Inc talks to the President of the French Chamber of Commerce in Japan -- The French chamber in Japan is the oldest European chamber of commerce, started in 1918. In Japan we have now reached a membership of 556. We are also the largest contributor to the European Business Council in Japan (EBCJ) and for France, the chamber here in Japan is one its most important in the world; Japan is a major market for many French companies. There are Louis Vuitton, Hermes, Chanel and so on in the luxury brand sector with Renault and Michelin in the automotive industry. AXA have more than 10,000 employees here and Sanofi-Aventis are big in pharmaceuticals.

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CEO Interview: Junichi Fujimoto, FON Japan

Junichi FujimotoJunichi FujimotoBy Hugh Ashton -- Smaller devices incorporating wireless networking are proliferating—not just computers, but phones, PDAs and hand-held gaming machines are using the Internet to send and receive data at high speed. Areas of dense population, such as Japanese cities, would seem ideal for these networks which have limitations on the area covered by each base station, but on the other hand, setting up the infrastructure for such ubiquitous coverage would seem to be a prohibitively expensive operation.


Exclusive Interview: Romano Mazzucco

Romano MazzuccoRomano MazzuccoBy Peter Harris -- J@pan Inc talks to the President of the Italian Chamber of Commerce in Japan. -- The Italian chamber has roughly 170 members. Italian companies working in Japan come from a wide variety of industries. Our members come from some of the largest name Italian companies, Gucci, Armani, Lamborghini, Fiat and so on. We also have some hitech companies, legal services and many other kinds of smaller enterprises are represented.


Expert Interview: Yukio Nagasawa

Yukio NagasawaYukio NagasawaBy Louise Calvert
J@pan Inc talks to a former intellectual property judge about IP in China, the US and Japan.

Yukio Nagasawa has a phenomenal resume. Among his glittering array of judicial appointments, professorships and qualifications from top global institutions, two features stand out. Firstly, he has a persistent interest in foreign legal systems: having worked and studied across Asia, Europe and the US, he has a wholly global legal perspective. Secondly, with a total of 20 years experience of work as a judge, including five years at the Supreme Court and four years at the Tokyo District Court, he has a unique inside view of the system.



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