Plug and Play is a global VC / accelerator headquartered in Sillicon Valley. We have 34 locations worldwide with 3 locations (Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka) in Japan.
Plug and Play Ventures, the Venture Capital arm of Plug and Play, is recognized as one of the most active investors worldwide. We have a solid track record of making investments in multiple unicorns and co-investing with top-tier VCs around the world. We invested in total of 222 startups worldwide in2018 and we annnounced our first investment in Japan in 2019. In Japan, startups do not need to be selected into our Accelerator Program to be considered for investments.
We run our Accelerator Programs in 30 locations and select over 1,000 startups worldwide.
Twice a year per vertical (industry-specific accelerator), selected startups to participate in our 12-week Program. Each program is called a Batch. In Japan, we have 6 verticals: 5 verticals in Tokyo, 1 vertical in Kyoto, and 1 vertical in Osaka. The chart below depicts each vertical, and diverse group of startups are selected for each program.
We partner with over 400 companies worldwide and support their innovation initiatives by bringing together startups, investors, and blue-chip corporations. As of December 2019, we have 36 official corporate partners (Please refer to above).
During the program, we accelerate the growth of the startups businesses through collaboration with our corporate partners.
Corporate partners for each of the verticals are shown below. However, selected startups will have the opportunity to collaborate with any of the corporate partners within different verticals.
We provide the resources necessary for growth to our startups through 5 workshops. Each workshop has different themes and experts within given topics are invited as guest speakers.
【Experts/Topics from Past Workshops】
・Author of Science of Entrepreneurship / Masayuki Tadokoro - PMF
・Dentsu / Shinji Nakagawa - Copy Writing
・Tokyu Corporation / Yoshimasa Kato - Secrets of Conducted PoCs with Large Corporation
・ISGS Investment Works / Kazuhito Goshima - Venture Financing
VC Mentoring Session
During VC Mentoring Session, group mentoring session among 2-3 startups and 2-3 VC mentors will be conducted. Startups will have the opportunity to receive advice and feedback regarding business strategy, financing, marketing, talent hiring, legal / intellectual property, system engineering, etc. The session will provide an excellent opportunity for learning as each of the startups will have the chance to listen to feedbacks given to other startups from multiple mentors.
Lunch and Learn
Lunch session with seasoned entrepreneurs will be hosted. By listening to their stories and growth strategies, startups will have the opportunity to learn the key to growth.
[Entrepreneurs from Past L&L]
・Folio / Shinichiro Kai
・Author of Yahoo Speak in 1 Minute / Yoichi Ito
・airCloset / Satoshi Amanuma
・Wizgroup / Hiromi Okuda
・Money Forward / Yosuke Tsuji
A session with Nathan Gold, provider of pitch coaching to various clients including TED and TEDx speakers, will be provided. Nathan Gold also gives pitch coaching to startups at our Silicon Valley headquarter. Please note you do not need to be fluent in English for this session. In such a case, Nathan will give feedbacks on use of eye contact and body language. We will have 2 types of sessions: one-on-one session and seminar.
The official start of the 3months program. During the Startup Orientation on the first day, we go over the program schedule, resources provided, expectations, and will also host a networking session to connect with our Corporate Partners. During the Orientation on the second day, Corporate Partners will deliver reverse pitches so that specific collaboration ideas can be discussed during the individual meetings.
Focus Week takes place halfway through the program and is filled with theme-specific contents. Below are contents from past programs (contents will vary depending on the batch).
・Cross-vertical pitch to Corporate Partners from other verticals
・Opportunity to pitch to larger corporations outside of Plug and Play Japan network
・Networking sessions with outside entities (i.e. Financial Services Agency)
・Individual pitch coach sessions
・Media Introduction (media caravan, media lecture)
In addition, we advise startups to proactively set up individual meetings with our Corporate Partners during Focus Week.
Final pitch and Summit demonstrations. During the last Summer/Fall 2019 Summit, we had 2,004 attendees including corporations that are not Plug and Play Japan's corporate partners, media, VC, etc. You will have direct discussions with event guests at the booth area.At the Summit Startup Pitch Session, the pitch winner from each vertical will be selected. As a token of an Award Winner, a round trip flight tickets to travel to Plug and Play Global locations (or another opportunity to fly to Japan) will be gifted. Plug and Play Staff will arrange your travel based on your business goals. You may pitch at global locations Summit, meet investors or join external events, conferences, etc.
We leverage our network of 33 international offices to support global expansion of our startups through introduction to programs in various locations, Corporate Partners/VCs, etc.