Oct. 31, 2018
Partnership agreement concluded with Plug and Play Japan
Sumitomo Corporation (Head Office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director, President and Chief Executive Officer: Masayuki Hyodo) has become the first integrated trading company to conclude a partnership agreement of “IoT” segment with Plug and Play Japan KK (Head Office: Shibuya-ku, Tokyo; Managing Partner: Phillip Vincent; hereinafter, “Plug and Play Japan”), which provides support for growth of startup companies possessing innovative technologies and ideas. Sumitomo Corporation will assist startup companies in fast commercialization and growing their business by actively matching up these enterprises with its own lineup of businesses, at the same time pushing ahead with the Sumitomo Corporation Group’s digital transformation (hereinafter, “DX”) and accelerating the creation of next-generation businesses.
Plug and Play Japan was founded in 2017 as the Japanese affiliate of the US company Plug and Play, itself established in 2006 in Silicon Valley. It provides management support and offices to startup companies seeking to expand into Japan and matches them up with enterprises, thereby helping them achieve accelerated growth. Plug and Play is one of the world’s leading accelerators (Note), having assisted more than 2,000 startup companies in 26 locations in 11 countries worldwide since its establishment.
Sumitomo Corporation has invested in starup companies and created businesses in Silicon Valley and Hong Kong for nearly 20 years. Adding to this, it will be accelerating innovation by increasing its interfaces with startup companies inside and outside Japan through its partnership agreement with Plug and Play Japan.
The Sumitomo Corporation Group is currently partnering with Plug and Play in China and considering collaborating with them in the US as well, the aim being to accelerate innovation globally across the Sumitomo Corporation Group.
In its Medium-term Management Plan 2020, Sumitomo Corporation is looking to enhance its existing businesses and to use its platform business to promote DX and create businesses that will serve as new sources of earnings for the next generation. In creating next-generation businesses, the Company has an insight for the megatrends of the future and identified three growth areas in which it can leverage its strengths – “technology x innovation”, “healthcare”, and “social infrastructure” – and it will be actively investing management resources in these areas from a future-oriented perspective.
(Note) Accelerators: organizations that provide newly-founded startup companies with management assistance and offices via periodical programs, match these startup companies up with enterprises, and offer them support that enables them to grow in an accelerated fashion.
■ Sumitomo Corporation’s Material Issues
The Sumitomo Corporation Group positions “Six Material Issues to Achieve Sustainable Growth with Society” as an important factor in developing business strategies and in the decision-making processes for individual businesses. Going forward, we will pursue sustainable growth by resolving these issues through our business activities. This project should prove especially beneficial in “Establishing a Foundation for Comfortable and Enriching Lifestyles”, “Providing Diverse ‘Accessibility’” and “Developing Human Resources and Promoting Diversity”