Takeaways from Indian startup delegation to CEATEC – 2018 in Tokyo

NASSCOM participated in “CEATEC – 2018” in Tokyo, 16th-19th Oct. CEATEC is one of the best platform for both hardware and software companies looking for partners, customers as well as investors in the Japanese ecosystem. This year our delegation size was 15 companies – could have been 2 startups more but unluckily enough their visas got rejected. Out of these 15, ten startups were fully sponsored by Meity and Jetro (as last year) and 5 travelled on their own. In all, the overall participation of the audience was as high – 1.4 lakh (tentatively suggested by organizers on day 4).


On day 0, at the pre-launch networking, it was heartening to see one of the Indian startups from among the previous year participants (Flutura) being recognized for making significant impact in the Japanese ecosystem too. The networking session was primarily organized to give a basic understanding of the said ecosystem. This session was attended by some of the key investors/stakeholders from there along with startups from India, Russia, Israel, Malaysia, UK, France, Germany etc. Continuing with the legacy, India was again the largest in terms of participating companies.


CEATEC 2018 in all, showcased 800+ companies from all across the globe, ranging from startups/companies building nano products to the Teslas of the world.  Some of the products were truly outstanding. One such was Neurochat, a startup by Russian cofounders which helps people with physical limitations communicate by sensing the impulse generated in brain.

Indian delegation was a mix of both hardware and software companies working in wide range of areas such as drones, automobile health monitoring, affordable water purifiers, solar tech, analytics etc.

On day 2, we were visited by the Deputy Chief of Mission from the Indian Embassy in Japan. The Jetro / CEATEC team was kind enough to entertain our startup interests by bringing potential customers / investors for Indian participants intermittently on all 4 days of the exhibition. It was exciting to see how Gagan and team had positioned NASSCOM in the Japanese ecosystem, where NASSCOM is truly seen as the face of India.     

On day 4, it was pleasure hearing from almost all the participants that the 4 days at exhibition gave them enough connects to explore the Japanese market for the next few months.  

Few points which I would like to highlight about Tokyo:

  1. Amazingly disciplined people and their commitment levels.
  2. Cars being expensive, not that Uber / taxis are cheap (in comparison to India) but seems to be the popular choice. Clearly marking the government’s push for public transport.
  3. Startups define respective countries state of life: Startups from Israel were largely in defense, radar, nano technologies.
  4. Some marquee products displayed include: A climate (temperature, humidity etc) monitoring device which can be placed in / around bee hives as the global warming is affecting their existence the most; “Neurochat“ a startup that enables a quadriplegic / physical disability person communicate through brain impulses; “Oceo” from India trying to offer clean drinking water to every individual at most affordable price point; “Buddy”- a robo companion to guard assets, play with kids, perform task on digital platform etc.


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