Japan’s solutions-focused multilingual news service J-Stories has partnered with the Mainichi national daily’s startup arm to help entrepreneurs in Japan go beyond borders and expand their services overseas through storytelling and journalism.
The partnership agreement was signed in November 2023 between Pacific Bridge Media and Consulting (PBMC), the Tokyo-based company that operates J-Stories, and Mainichi Future Creation Lab (MFCL), the national newspaper’s startup accelerator.
MFCL has been helping the startup community in Japan by providing mentoring, financial support and an incubation office in Tokyo, among other assistance.
Under this partnership, J-Stories and MFCL will provide resources for each other and jointly deliver stories about Japanese innovators and startups for both overseas and domestic audiences in English, Chinese and Japanese.
The two media entities are also planning to host a global innovation pitch event in February 2024 in Tokyo, a rare such event spearheaded by news organizations in Japan.
Toshi Maeda, CEO of PBMC and a former Reuters journalist, launched J-Stories in 2022 to help Japanese startups, researchers and small businesses tell their stories globally. Maeda and his team also focus more on the “solutions” these startups offer to the global social and environmental challenges rather than the “problems” often covered in the news.
“Since its launch last year, J-Stories has been a crucial source of information about Japanese startups and innovations, valued and recognized especially by non-Japanese speaking VCs, media and business professionals,” said Maeda.
“With yet another recognition by and partnership with Mainichi, a highly respected newspaper group in Japan, we’re certain we can provide more stories that will connect the startup communities in Japan and overseas in a practical sense. Coming from journalism backgrounds, we’re excited to bring our expertise together and create positive synergies that will also hopefully benefit journalism in the long run.”
Tamotsu Takatsu, former chief of Mainichi newspaper’s political news team and currently CEO of MCFL, commented: “As the importance of supporting the Japanese startup community continues to grow, we are very excited for this partnership.“
“By utilizing and enhancing our existing content delivery and startup support activities, as well as the international communication capabilities of J-Stories, which is Japan’s first solution-focused media, we aim to increase our presence as a media that is open to both the corporate world and local communities,” Takatsu said. “We strive to contribute to solving not only regional issues but also global challenges.”
【Mainichi Future Creation Lab (MFCL)】
Location: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo
CEO: Tamotsu Takatsu
Founded: July 2017