Executive Director January 2019

New Year notes

Step up your participation in 2019

Happy New Year to all members of the British Chamber of Commerce in Japan (BCCJ) and readers of ACUMEN! Like much of Japan’s workforce, we at the BCCJ returned to our desks on 7 January all set to charge ahead on a number of projects in the Year of the Boar.

Online revamp

This month we are circulating a request for proposal for the redevelopment of the BCCJ website. The current site was conceived in 2011 and built in 2012, following impassioned discussions between myself, then-President Philip Gibb OBE and the executive committee (Excom). The chamber and the site have come a long way since that time, with traffic having risen from about 100 to nearly 20,000 users per month.

At its monthly meeting last July, Excom decided that a new site should be designed to more clearly reflect our business objectives and present a fit-for-purpose shop-face for the chamber during an exceptionally important time in UK–Japan relations.

The site should make it easier for you and all members to book events for yourself and on behalf of your colleagues. It should also enable you to more easily access business intel in the BCCJ archives, as well as keep up to date with developments on topics such as Brexit.

Proposals should be sent to the BCCJ office by noon on 31 January. More information can be found at www.bccjapan.com


Have you ever considered standing for a leader­ship role at the BCCJ? Is there a UK–Japan commercial cause that really matters to you?

BCCJ Excom determines the shape and strategic direction of the chamber and ultimately influences the bilateral business relationship.

This year, our Excom nomination period will run from 18 February to 15 March, during which time the BCCJ office will be accepting completed nomination forms, including pledges from each candidate stating how he or she intends to serve the BCCJ membership during the coming year. In particular, we value nominations from female candidates. We are also seeking nominations from those who can drive forward projects such as our Rugby Alliance and the 2019 British Business Awards.

The election period will then take place from 27 March to 10 April. BCCJ members can vote for their 2019–20 Excom by online poll, post or proxy.

The election results will be revealed on the evening of 24 April at our Annual General Meeting, to be held this year at the Roppongi Hills Club.

Refresh your reps

Who’s currently representing your firm at BCCJ events and meetings? Take a moment to review and possibly refresh your BCCJ delegate list. Platinum members can register unlimited numbers of BCCJ members, Corporates can list up to 12, and Entrepreneurs up to three. If you find you have spaces available in your list, we encourage you to register your firm’s rising stars, including women and perhaps leaders from your firm’s diversity and inclusion network. The idea is to sign up a diverse line-up of delegates so that they can interact with the BCCJ network and bring back new knowledge, energy and business leads to your firm. Your choices really do make a difference to the strength and relevance of our community.

Here’s to a magnificent and meaningful year ahead!