How is the city of Fukuoka seen by people overseas?
One Korean broadcaster told me, "I know Fukuoka is known for its thriving start-up business," while a director working on a Japan-U.S. basis said, "Fukuoka has amazing energy!
One of the reasons for their image of Fukuoka as a "city with energy" is that Fukuoka is the most "startup-friendly city" in Japan.
How did Fukuoka become so?
Let me briefly summarize how it happened.
In 2004, Fukuoka City was designated as a "Special Zone for Global Startups and Job Creation" under the National Strategic Special Zone.
Three years later, "Fukuoka Growth Next" (a.k.a. FGN) was opened to provide full consultation and support for local and global companies that want to start up in Fukuoka. The building itself is very cool, renovated from an old elementary school which had been closed down.
Some companies are housed in the co-woring space, while others work freely in the "Startup Cafe," a free space. (The author also uses it as a hideout.)
Consultations and business matching are held every day, and the place is full of energy.
I highly recommend it as one of the "tourist spots" in Fukuoka.
◆Fukuoka Growth Next （FGN）
Supported more than 530 companies! 89,236 Business Matching!
Funding raised: 68 companies, 24.4 billion yen or more!
541 employment increase! (*Total from April H29 to the end of January R4 (employment increase is until the end of March R3))
With the startup support initiatives from the 2014 "Special Zone for Global Startups and Job Creation," Fukuoka has been the city with the highest "startup rate" in Japan for the past three years.
Source: Fukuoka City Economic Summary (September 2021)
Here below is the startup rate rank;
2. Saitama and Nagoya
4. Tokyo and Yokohama
Economic growth requires an ecosystem in which new companies start up and new services are created.
Fukuoka is a city with high potential to lead Japan and global business in the future!