Summer/Fall 2020 Batch Schedule


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Innovation Platform

Plug and Play is a global VC / accelerator headquartered in Sillicon Valley. We have 33 locations worldwide with 2 locations (Tokyo and Kyoto) in Japan.

Plug and Play Ventures, the Venture Capital arm of Plug and Play, is recognized as one of the most active investors worldwide. We have a solid track record of making investments in multiple unicorns and co-investing with top-tier VCs around the world. We invested in total of 222 startups worldwide in2018 and we annnounced our first investment in Japan in 2019. In Japan, startups do not need to be selected into our Accelerator Program to be considered for investments.

We run our Accelerator Programs in 30 locations and select over 1,000 startups worldwide.

Industry-specific Acceleration Program

Twice a year per vertical (industry-specific accelerator), selected startups to participate in our 12-week Program. Each program is called a Batch. In Japan, we have 6 verticals: 5 verticals in Tokyo and 1 vertical in Kyoto. The chart below depicts each vertical, and diverse group of startups are selected for each program.


You can find the full list of our startups here.

Corporate Partners


We partner with over 400 companies worldwide and support their innovation initiatives by bringing together startups, investors, and blue-chip corporations. As of December 2019, we have 36 official corporate partners (Please refer to above).

During the program, we accelerate the growth of the startups businesses through collaboration with our corporate partners.
Corporate partners for each of the verticals are shown below. However, selected startups will have the opportunity to collaborate with any of the corporate partners within different verticals.

Plug and Play Japan's Corporate Partners

Global Network

We leverage our network of 33 international offices to support global expansion of our startups through introduction to programs in various locations, Corporate Partners/VCs, etc.


Our Mentors

Mentors from VCs and consulting firms work together with us to support startups with various financial and strategic needs.


Co-Working Space 

Selected startups in Tokyo will be able to use Plug and Play Shibuya open space free of charge from during the program with the cooperation of Tokyu Land Corporation (up to 2 people from each company). Selected startups in Kyoto will be able to use engawa Kyoto open space free of charge from during the program with the cooperation of Dentsu (up to 2 people from each company).


Program Contents



We provide the resources necessary for growth to our startups through 5 workshops. Each workshop has different themes and experts within given topics are invited as guest speakers.

[Experts/Topics from Past Workshops]

  • Author of Science of Entrepreneurship / Masayuki Tadokoro - PMF

  • Dentsu / Shinji Nakagawa - Copy Writing

  • Tokyu Corporation / Yoshimasa Kato - Secrets of Conducted PoCs with Large Corporation

  • ISGS Investment Works / Kazuhito Goshima - Venture Financing





Lunch session with seasoned entrepreneurs will be hosted. By listening to their stories and growth strategies, startups will have the opportunity to learn the key to growth.

[Entrepreneurs from Past L&L]

  • Folio / Shinichiro Kai

  • Author of Yahoo Speak in 1 Minute / Yoichi Ito

  • airCloset / Satoshi Amanuma

  • Wizgroup / Hiromi Okuda

  • Money Forward / Yosuke Tsuji





During VC Mentoring Session, group mentoring session among 2-3 startups and 2-3 VC mentors will be conducted. Startups will have the opportunity to receive advice and feedback regarding business strategy, financing, marketing, talent hiring, legal / intellectual property, system engineering, etc. The session will provide an excellent opportunity for learning as each of the startups will have the chance to listen to feedbacks given to other startups from multiple mentors.

Pitch Review.png



A session with Nathan Gold, provider of pitch coaching to various clients including TED and TEDx speakers, will be provided. Nathan Gold also gives pitch coaching to startups at our Silicon Valley headquarter. Please note you do not need to be fluent in English for this session. In such a case, Nathan will give feedbacks on use of eye contact and body language. We will have 2 types of sessions: one-on-one session and seminar.

Must-to-Attend Contents


Orientation Day

The official start of the 3months program. During the Startup Orientation on the first day, we go over the program schedule, resources provided, expectations, and will also host a networking session to connect with our Corporate Partners. During the Orientation on the second day, Corporate Partners will deliver reverse pitches so that specific collaboration ideas can be discussed during the individual meetings.

Focus Week

Focus Week takes place halfway through the program and is filled with theme-specific contents. Below are contents from past programs (contents will vary depending on the batch).

  • Cross-vertical pitch to Corporate Partners from other verticals

  • Opportunity to pitch to larger corporations outside of Plug and Play Japan network

  • Networking sessions with outside entities (i.e. Financial Services Agency)

  • Individual pitch coach sessions

  • Media Introduction (media caravan, media lecture)

In addition, we advise startups to proactively set up individual meetings with our Corporate Partners during Focus Week.


Final pitch and Summit demonstrations. During the last Summer/Fall 2019 Summit, we had 2,004 attendees including corporations that are not Plug and Play Japan's corporate partners, media, VC, etc. You will have direct discussions with event guests at the booth area.At the Summit Startup Pitch Session, the pitch winner from each vertical will be selected. As a token of an Award Winner, a round trip flight tickets to travel to Plug and Play Global locations (or another opportunity to fly to Japan) will be gifted. Plug and Play Staff will arrange your travel based on your business goals. You may pitch at global locations Summit, meet investors or join external events, conferences, etc. 

About Application

After application form is submitted, preliminary screening will be conducted by Plug and Play and our Corporate Partners. If you pass the screening process, you will be invited to our final screening process to pitch directly to our Corporate Partners.

Plug and Play program is stage-agnostic. We provide contents that fits the needs of individual stages.

*We do not ask our startups for fee or equity to participate in our program
*Startups that has participated in our program in the past can re-apply, as long as the application is not for the same geography AND vertical.

Playbook is Plug and Play's database that connects startups to global blue chip corporations / VCs. Once registered in Playbook, startups will have the opportunity to be invited to individual meetings with Corporate Partners / VCs, when there is a match in needs.


Summer/Fall 2020 Batch Program Schedule



Selection Day

APR 16 - 17

Orientation Day


Focus Week



SEP 30


Selection Day

APR 14-15

Orientation Day


Focus Week



SEP 29


Selection Day

APR 22- 23

Orientation Day


Focus Week



SEP 30


Selection Day

APR 20 - 21

Orientation Day


Focus Week



SEP 29

Brand & Retail

Selection Day

APR 15- 16

Orientation Day


Focus Week



SEP 29

Hardtech & Health

Selection Day

APR 21- 22

Orientation Day


Focus Week






Are there fee to participate?

We do not ask our startups for any fee or equity to participate in our program.


Will office space be provided during the program?

Plug and Play Shibuya co-working space in Shibuya will be provided for the Tokyo program and engawa Kyoto co-working spacce in Shijo Karasuma area will be provided for the Kyoto program free of charge.


We do not fit within the IoT, Fintech, Insurtech, Mobility, Brand & Retail, Hardtech & Health verticals. Can we still apply?

Yes. Seed to middle stage startups from various industries has been selected into our program in the past.


Do we need to attend Orientation, Focus Week, and Summit?

Yes. We require startups to attend Orientation, Focus Week, and Summit, in addition to Selection Day. The participant does not have to be the CEO, but we do ask for at least one person from your company to attend.


Do you provide mentoring sessions?

Plug and Play Japan has over 20 mentors who are experts in their respective fields. We provide our startups opportunity to receive advice from our mentors, in addition to financing opportunities.


Do you provide hiring support?

We host hiring events during the program. In addition, we allow our startups to post job opportunities on Plug and Play Japan's website. In addition, we collaborate with Service Partners that provide hiring support at discounted rates.


We participated in the Tokyo program in the past. Can we apply to the Kyoto program?

Yes. You can also apply to different vertical within the Tokyo program as well.


Our business/technology is applicable to both IoT and Hardtech. Which program should we apply to?

Please consider which Corporate Partners you want to collaborate with, and the preferred city (Tokyo or Kyoto) when making the decision.


If we participate in the Kyoto program, would we still have access to Corporate Partners in the Tokyo program?

Insurtech and Hardtech & Health will conduct joint Focus Week in Tokyo. For other verticals, we will set up individual meeting, where it makes sense.


Where will the events for the Kyoto program take place?

Focus Week will be held in Tokyo. All other events (Selection Day / Orientation Day / Workshop / Expo) will be held in Kyoto.


Plug and Play Japan's Monthly Pitch Session will begin starting January 2020!

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