MIMETAS opens new office in Tokyo, Japan
An interview with Yoko Ejiri, Director Mimetas Japan
Mimetas has recently opened an office in Japan, under the guidance and direction of Yoko Ejiri. She answered a couple of questions to explain her plans with us in Japan. Of course, we are all curious about what she has in store for us. Japan is a big player in the biotechnological field, and we want to get a quick start.
Can you tell us something about your background?
I am trained as a biochemical engineer and joined the company Kuraray Co., Ltd 18 years ago. Within Kuraray, I was in charge of the development of a new 3D cell culture product, called Elplasia. The product has thousands of micrometer-sized wells on the bottom of a cell culture plate with modified low attachment surface for producing spheroid formation. My tasks spanned the complete spectrum of bringing a product to the market: from production, application development to marketing and sales worldwide. I believe my experience and network related to 3D cell culture products will be a great benefit to MIMETAS in my role as Director.
How do you see our office in Japan transforming in the next five years?
I want to establish a network-like business ecosystem with researchers of Mimetas, collaborators, customers and potential customers. They join our facility in Tokyo to learn about our products and technologies. There, many excellent researchers work together and positively move their projects forward.
How is marketing in Japan different from marketing in the West?
I think one of the differences between marketing in Japan and the West is how to build customer relationships. In Japan, sometimes it is essential to spend time with customers after work hour ends. Japanese marketing/sales people frequently meet with potential customers in person, sometimes eat dinner and drink alcohol with them until late. Of course, quality, customer service, science, lead time, price and so on are very important, but we often have to sacrifice our private time to build a good customer relationship.
What are the biggest challenges in the Asian market?
Variety is one of the challenges in the Asian market. There are many countries with different languages and different cultures. Market size is rapidly growing and developing technology with their sense of values. It will be more important to keep watching their political trends and business trends and seek the best strategy to get into the market. Additionally, we need to build Intellectual Property. We could face a copy-cat product unless we protect our technologies and Mimetas’ brand.
Written by Indi Joore