Business expansion into Japan

Q. What are the types of operations available for foreigners or foreign companies to establish their business presence in Japan?


A. In expanding to Japan, foreign companies or foreigners can operate in three ways: (1) set up a company in Japan (subsidiary company); (2) set up a branch office in Japan (branch office); or (3) set up a representative office in Japan.

Q. Is it possible for a foreign person or company to expand their business into Japan and establish a Japanese company or branch?

A. Yes, it is possible. Japan has no laws in place that prevent foreign nationals or entities from establishing their own Japanese companies or branches.

Q. What are the advantages of foreigners or foreign companies establishing bases when expanding their business to Japan?

A. By expanding your business in Japan, foreign nationals can enjoy the secure and reliable business environment that Japan offers.

Incorporating a Japanese company

Q. Tell us what foreign nationals and companies should be careful about when incorporating a business in Japan.

A. When a foreigner does not have the appropriate status of residence (visa) to manage or operate a business in Japan, they will need to apply for a “business manager” visa.

Q. I would like to set up a company in Japan and appoint a foreign national residing in Japan as the representative director. Can I change the current visa to a “business manager” visa?

A. As long as the requirements for a business manager visa are met, yes, it is possible to apply for the current visa to be changed to a business manager visa. The business manager visa may or may not be granted depending on the business plan submitted by the applicant.

Q. Can the registered name of a Japanese company be written in the Latin alphabet?

A. Yes, it is allowed.

Q. How much capital should a Japanese corporation have?

A. Following the effectivity of the Companies Act, minimum capital requirements have been abolished, making it possible for a corporation to be incorporated with a capital of 1 Japanese yen or more.

Q. Is it possible to incorporate a kabushiki kaisha (K.K.) in Japan with just one director?

A. Yes, it is possible to incorporate a business with just one director.

Q. Can I use my home address as the registered address of my head office?

A. If it is a stand-alone property (detached house) which you own, then there is no problem. However, if it is rental property or a condominium, it is necessary to confirm with the property owner or with the condominium rules if it is allowed to be registered as an office.

Q. Do we need to state the name of building when we register the address of our head office/branch?

A. It’s fine to not include the building name.

Procedures after expansion into Japan

Q. What should I do after incorporating my business and expanding into Japan?

A. Once you’ve expanded your business into Japan, you will need to submit a notice to the tax office. In addition, you may need to notify the Labor Standards Inspection Office, Pension Service Office, Public Employment Security Office (“Hello Work”), etc. that have jurisdiction over your business.

About Shiodome Partners

Q. Since I’m overseas, is it possible for us to communicate via Zoom, Skype, email, etc.?

A. Yes, it is. We are flexible with how we work with our clients.

Q. How is Shiodome Partners’ history of supporting foreign nationals and companies in expanding their business into Japan?

A. With over a hundred cases annually, we have handled over 700 cases in total.

Q. Can Shiodome Partners provide support in other languages other than Japanese?

A. Yes, we can. Shiodome Partners has members that are bilingual in major languages such as English and Chinese.

Q. How does Shiodome Partners’ fee structure work for services related to Japan business expansion support.

A. Our fees vary depending on the content of our service. Please feel free to contact us so that we can discuss further.

Q. If I request for Shiodome Partners to assist me in establishing my company, when should I remit payment for your services?

A. Remunerations is paid in advance.

Q. Can we request Shiodome Partners to perform all necessary procedures with the tax office, Public Employment Security Office, etc. on our behalf?

A. Yes, we can do the procedures with Japanese government agencies on your behalf.

Q. Can you respond to inquiries from tax offices or during tax audits?

A. Investigations done by the tax authorities in Japan are just as strict as those done by tax authorities overseas. We will handle these investigations properly.

Q. Do you practice a strict confidentiality policy when it comes to your Japanese business expansion consultancy services?

A. Yes, we do. Our members at Shiodome Partners are obligated to maintain confidentiality under the Certified Public Accountants Act, the Attorney Act, and Licensed Tax Accountants Act.

Flow of Consultation

Kindly contact us via mail or through call. In certain cases where it would be difficult to provide free consultations, we will notify you of the consultation fees during the first meeting. Feel free to inquire with us regarding this.
For consultations regarding business setup in Japan, in practice we would prefer to meet with you personally to discuss the matter. However, we only ask this of our client at their convenience.
Our Proposal
Our Proposal
Following our consultation with you, we will prepare our proposal outlining the services we can offer your company as well as our suggestions regarding your concerns about business setup. This is where we provide you with our fee quotation.
Finalizing Contract
Finalizing Contract
We will prepare a contract based on the proposal and fee quotation we have provided you. Once the contents of the contract have been confirmed, we shall enter into the contract.
Start of Support
Start of Support
Once the contract has been finalized and put into effect, we shall promptly and flexibly begin the business setup consulting based on the proposals made.

Flow of Consultation