4th anniversary of the MoU on Startup Support!
Fukuoka City x Auckland City - 4th Anniversary
5 min read
1. Fukuoka City x Auckland City
4th Anniversary of the MoU on Startup Support!
Fukuoka City and Auckland City (New Zealand) have deepened their relationship since the decision to establish a sister port relationship between the Port of Hakata and the Port of Auckland, and became "sister cities" in 1986. Thirty years after becoming sister cities, the mayor of Fukuoka City proposed to the mayor of Auckland City to collaborate on startups, and in July 2017, the two cities signed a MoU on startups, which celebrated its 4th anniversary this month. We asked the city of Auckland, which is not only a sister city but also a mutual collaborator in terms of startup support, to tell us about the city's attractions, so please take a look.
(2) We'll keep you up to date on the attractions of Auckland and its startup ecosystem!
GridAKL StartUp Hub – Auckland, New Zealand
Auckland is an innovation hub and the economic centre of New Zealand. It is home to a third of the country’s population and generator of 40 per cent of its GDP. It is New Zealand's primary hub for foreign investment, multinational corporate offices and is New Zealand's largest and fastest growing market. As a major skills, production, research and development hub of Asia-Pacific, Auckland is an exciting place to live and do business.
GridAKL is at the heart of the Innovation Precinct in Auckland’s Wynyard Quarter, created by local government economic development agency, Auckland Unlimited. It is home to over 130 companies and 777 individuals in technology-focused industries. It is a growing community of entrepreneurs and StartUps, a place to connect, share ideas, collaborate and scale your business idea.
GridAKL provides support and resources specifically designed to enable a StartUp to thrive. Free support services include legal advice, business mentors, investment clinics with angel investors, early-stage startUp business mentoring programmes, founders connect series, health & wellbeing clinics and services. A fortnightly schedule of carefully curated community activations also provide opportunities for founders to share their StartUp story, learn about the entrepreneurial journey, connect with other founders, inspire collaborations and networking.
GridAKL serves as the connector to Auckland’s innovation ecosystem, collaborating with industry, local government, tertiary institutions and the innovation community to drive inclusive economic prosperity throughout Auckland.
Auckland has a skilled and stable workforce, and creates, attracts, and retains top talent. 180+ different ethnic communities, provide a diversity of talent, taste, and thought. This diversity coupled with ease of doing business mean Auckland is well suited as a test-bed location.
The GridAKL Innovation precinct is made up of a mix of heritage character 1920s renovated warehouses and modern award-winning new buildings in Wynyard Quarter on Auckland’s stunning waterfront.It is close to Britomart Train Station, major public transport routes for buses, ferries and trains, and is surrounded by cafes and restaurants, hotels, apartments, car parking, and the CBD shopping precinct.
Digitally connected to the world, Auckland is the tech capital of New Zealand. It has state-of-the-art infrastructure supporting and enabling thriving technology, film, and television sectors.
Auckland Unlimited is equipped to support your business to set up in Auckland. We focus on five sectors in our business and investment attraction programme:
- Tech and creative industries
Auckland is New Zealand’s tech powerhouse. It accounts for over half of the sector GDP, employs over 68,000 people, and contributes nearly NZ$10 billion to the region’s economy.
Competitive in fintech, health IT, digital and creative technologies, Auckland is also home to established manufacturers in the biotech, robotics, precision engineering and marine industries. Powered by an advanced digital infrastructure, the sector has a highly skilled workforce, world-class innovation hubs, a business-friendly environment and competitive wages.
- Green economy
Auckland is spearheading New Zealand’s target of reaching net zero emissions, with a comprehensive climate plan and unique solutions for becoming a greener city. The resulting burgeoning green economy offers new opportunities for foreign business and investment.
- Food and Beverage Industry
Auckland has an innovative and interconnected food and beverage sector known for high-quality ingredients and products. Food and beverage manufacturing in Auckland is the largest manufacturing cluster in New Zealand, with a mix of multinationals, large and small firms and a well-developed ecosystem.
- Building and Infrastructure
Auckland has a vibrant construction sector. Fuelled by record population growth, demand for housing and pressure on infrastructure in Auckland is strong. The construction supply chain has growth opportunities for investors and skilled workers for a wide range of publicly and privately funded projects.
We continue to work with the industry during the challenging times and we believe that opportunities lie ahead as the situation around the world improves in the next couple of years. New Zealand’s borders remain closed at this time, but we are working to remain engaged with investors and offshore businesses digitally.
Want to get in contact or find out more?
2. Fukuoka D.C. × Helsinki Business Hub
Webinar on Smart Cities was held!
What kind of organization is Fukuoka D.C.?
Fukuoka D.C. (Fukuoka Directive Council) is an organization consisting of "government, private companies, and universities" that consistently works from the formulation to promotion of growth strategies for the Fukuoka metropolitan area in order to envision a new future for Fukuoka and strengthen the region's international competitiveness.
What kind of organization is the Helsinki Business Hub?
The Helsinki Business Hub is the international trade and investment promotion agency for the Finnish capital region. They are responsible for the opening, growth and development of foreign companies in the capital region, and for helping them to find Finnish solutions and business partners.
This webinar featured presentations on "Fukuoka City's Smart City and Smart Energy Initiatives," "Helsinki's Efforts to Achieve Carbon Neutrality (Case Study)," "Power to X," and "Transition from Fossil to Renewable Energy," as well as a pitch by a Finnish energy startup.
For more information, please visit the following link.
3. Fukuoka Growth Next
A Startup Support Facility in Fukuoka City Celebrates the Second Anniversary of Its Reopening!
(1) What kind of institution is "Fukuoka Growth Next"?
"Fukuoka Growth Next (hereinafter referred to as "FGN") is a startup support facility operated in cooperation between the government and the private sector in an old elementary school building with 145 startups as of the end of May 2021. FGN supports startups and entrepreneurs to create new value and challenge the global market through its unique hands-on programs, events, and pitch contests, and also contributes to the development of the local economy by creating jobs.
FGN has a "Startup Cafe" as a place where people can casually consult on starting a business, and provides support at various stages of starting a business, including consultation with experts and consultation on employment. In addition, the "Global Startup Center" provides support for the overseas expansion of Fukuoka City startups and the expansion of overseas startups into Fukuoka in cooperation with 15 overseas partners in 11 countries and regions with which Fukuoka City has partnerships regarding startup support.
In this way, FGN has established a one-stop support system from pre-startup to post-startup, including foreign entrepreneurs.
(2) FGN's Achievements to Date
As FGN celebrates the second anniversary of its reopening in May 2019, please take a look at the infographic we created to show how we've grown and where we are now.
(3) Foreign entrepreneurs are also active at FGN
One of the unique features of FGN is that many of its tenants are entrepreneurs from overseas. Taking advantage of the visa system that Fukuoka City has been granted on a special basis by the national government to promote the establishment of new businesses by foreigners, people from various countries and regions, including those in Asia and Europe, have started their businesses in Fukuoka, and as of the end of May 2021, 16 startups started by foreign entrepreneurs have moved into FGN.
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In addition to sending out newsletters via email, we also send out information about Fukuoka's startup ecosystem on Facebook and LinkedIn in English.
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