Why you should launch your business in Japan


Land of mountains, mystery, culture and technology, Japan is also one of the world’s leading economies, coming in a very respectable third place behind the US and China. It is governed by a stable democracy and has an excellent interconnected infrastructure of high-speed railways, subways, ports and airports. It is also one of the most technologically advanced countries in the Far East, and many Japanese consumers and customers have high levels of disposable income and actively seek out top-quality, high-end goods and services.

Japanese companies are outward looking and eager to do business with foreign business partners. They are also typically keen to make long-term investments in quality goods and services. And because the country is now synonymous with the development of cutting-edge technologies and new products and services, this is a country many foreign companies turn to for assistance when they want to transform their innovative ideas into reality.

What about cultural barriers?

Some businesspeople in the West are troubled by the idea of navigating cultural differences successfully, but Japan and the Japanese are not, in fact, as hard to communicate with as you might be imagine. A ready smile, a bow, and a handshake will get you a long way. The truth is that the Japanese don’t expect what they call ‘gaijin’ (outsiders) to understand the intricacies of their unique culture.

What will definitely warm Japanese businesspeople to any foreign company arriving with an interesting proposal, however, is careful and accurate translations into Japanese of any business documentation and other relevant information they need to assimilate in connection with any transactions you wish to carry out with them. Although many more Japanese businesspeople speak English far more fluently than they did twenty or thirty years ago, historically Japan is an island nation which did not have a great deal to do with the outside world and this is reflected in the fact that many Japanese people, unlike Europeans, still do not speak and read English fluently.

The Japanese themselves are a warm-hearted, welcoming people, fond of hospitality and exchanging gifts. Traditional gift items from your home country, such as Scottish whiskey if you hail from Scotland, will always be accepted with excitement and gratitude. They are naturally curious about the outside world, especially the US, Europe and the West, and you need to be prepared to travel to local sites of interest, dine at nice restaurants or ryokans (traditional Japanese inns) and feature in a lot of selfies with your Japanese business associates.

Translations of any documentation accompanying business meetings, corporate decisions, marketing proposals, etc. are essential, therefore, and sometimes translations are even a legal requirement of certain business transactions with Japanese companies. Think the Japanese headquarters, for example, of many automotive companies with branches and manufacturing operations based overseas.

Japanese to English/English to Japanese translations should always be carried out by native speakers of the target language who are experts in the field of business covered by the various communications that need to be translated. This is the basic requirement for successful translations into and from any language, in fact. Furthermore, the Japanese prize accuracy, consistency and expertise, so you’ll want to choose a well-established and reputable translations partner for any translation work done to facilitate your business translations in Japan.

Wrapping it all up…

This is where we can help you. With over 12 years’ experience in translations, SEAtongue have risen to become localisation market leaders in Asia, providing translations into and from most leading Asian languages, including Japanese. We’re keenly conscious of how important keeping abreast of new technologies is to underpinning a successful, flexible business model that can adapt quickly to changing external pressures, so we have invested in up-to-date digital systems that keep us delivering top-quality translations to our customers, on time, every time.

We handle translation, DTP and typesetting, and even software localisation and linguistic testing. Our linguists cover a wide range of industries, so you can always be sure our Japanese translations are carried out by someone with expertise in your field of operations. And we are a trusted provider to some of the biggest brands on the planet, such as Microsoft, BMW and Bosch. SEAtongue is based at the heart of all the action, in Southeast Asia, and every translation is handled by a dedicated local language manager, who will oversee your project from start to finish.

Are you thinking of ‘turning Japanese’ and reaping the rewards of expanding your business into this lucrative market? Look no further for your translations partner. SEAtongue will walk with you every step of the way, ensuring that communications flow smoothly and helping you get the best out of your new business venture in Japan.

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