Toyobo Co., Ltd. has signed a partnership contract on November 1 with Plug and Play Japan KK (“PnPJ”, hereafter), a major startup accelerator based in Tokyo, in the domain of SmartCities. Under the partnership, Toyobo will exchange information about market demands for SmartCities and explore opportunities to collaborate with startups discovered and accelerated by PnPJ.
PnPJ was established in 2017 as a Japanese arm of Plug and Play, a top global venture capital/accelerator firm based in California, U.S. It has provided support to more than 400 startups in Japan and abroad. Plug and Play Osaka, a newly opened office in Osaka, in July this year, is tackling urban social issues, such as declining birthrate and rejuvenating urban infrastructure through accelerator programs themed on SmartCities.
Under the vision of “continuously create the solutions needed by people and the earth with materials and science,” Toyobo is pursuing business development based on backcasting. In 2019, Toyobo signed contract with U.S.-based Plug and Play to promote open innovation.*4 In this context, Toyobo believes SmartCities will be one of the solutions in the post COVID-19 era and decided to sign the partnership contract with PnPJ. Going forward, Toyobo will try to create new businesses that help materialize next-generation urban cities through collaboration with startups, which have synergistic effects with the company’s business domains, such as films/functional materials, mobility, lifestyle/environment and life science.