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KGAP+ Batch 1 Kickoff Week Report

On July 22, 2019, KGAP+:Keihanna Global Acceleration Program Plus was launched at Kiehanna Research Complex.

KGAP+ is a programme that startup companies selected from global innovation focal points or Japan pursue to implement a PoC or pilot testing in collaborates with various large-scaled Japanese companies in Keihanna Science City where is a PoC-friendly region. In 2019, Batch 1 takes place between July and September, while Batch 2 between Setpember and December, each participated by 10 companies globally.

One of the key points of KGAP+ is to integrate participating programmes both offline and online. The participanting companies gather at Kiehanna Science City during “Kickoff Week”(the first week) and “Demo-day Week”(the last week) of each batch. Throughout these weeks, the companies proceed with their PoC / pilot test while receiving online mentoring and seminors.

Now, let me share with you how the first “Kickoff Week”went on with 10 excitedly gathered startups, mentors and management team.


The day started with self-introduction by first-met participants followed by introcution of Keihanna RC project and KGAP+, also by orientation, so that participants can get preliminary information for the programme. A common language is English, though it was rare in Japan. By the lunch time, participants got along with each togethr and started frank conversation more than business context.

In the afternoon, a kickoff event and press briefing was held and portential partners as well as reporters joined. During the event, the 10 startup companies made 5-minutes pitching each on their technologies and products/services. Networking session was fiiled with active interactions between the companies and potential partners, which brought to the level of actual business partnerships for some companies.


The 10 companies had a 30-minutes business review and discussion with mentors andmanagement team to indentify the best produral paths, forcusing on partner exploration and design of a PoC / piloting test. Once the meeting came to a potential partner, the management team and mentors immediately contacted the partner and asked for a B2B meeting during Kickoff Week. “I leaned that give-it-a-try can work in the end!”, a mentors said.


The companies spent the day according to their own situation; some continued business reviews while others visited potential partners. In addition, JETRO (Japan External Trade Organization) provided overseas or inbound expansion seminors for Japanese or overseas companies respectively.

The day was followed by a round-table meeting with Deputy Mayor of Kyoto Prefecture, Mr. Yamashita. He kindly answered various inquiries and requests from all participating companies. It was really fulfilling occasion for the participants.


KGAP+ has 17 mentors from both Japan and overseas. Seven seminors/webinars on Japanese business customs/practices, design thinking, UX/UI, business expansion in Barcelona among others were given by these diverse mentors.

Tech-startups are sometimes unfamilliar with subjects such as design, marketing and something other than their expertise. KGAP+ therefore plans to backup them for their futher growth in these missing fields through online seminars and mentoring even after Kickoff Week.


Kickoff Week was wrapped up with pitching events in Osaka (“Morning Meetup”held by Deloitte Tohmatsu Venture Support Co., Ltd. at Osaka Innovation Hub) and Kyoto (“Keihanna lobal Startup Pitch in Kyoto – 2019 Summer”held by Keihanna RC at Kyoto Keizai Center). Pitching by the startup companies at both events were received enthusiastically by packed audience and these were an opportunity for the companies to meet new potential partners. Not only the companies, the management team was highly excited to realize great interests to the program by general public.

Having gone through various activities during the week and expecting three months of turly promising KGAP+ ahead, the participating companies shared their impression“It was an amazing week!” and “Looking forward to working on this with you!”. As organizer side, with mentors, we will work hard towards the final week for the companies’great satisfaction and big smile.