Fukuoka city has been presenting global business matching events through utilizing the startup support network covering 15 bases in 11 countries and regions.
As part of that, we will be presenting online event "ASCENSION 2021."
We will stream discussions between global entrepreneurs with Soichiro Takashima, Mayor of Fukuoka City, to create a chance for the global audience to know more about the meaning of challenging the world through the mindset of making tough times an opportunity.
Volume 1：Saturday, October 23rd 4:10~4:40pm JST
Notion Labs Inc. COO Akshay Kothari × Fukuoka City Mayor Soichiro Takashima
「The Startup Ecosystem amidst COVID-19 through the Lens of San Francisco and Fukuoka」
Joining this session is Akshay Kothari from "Notion Labs Inc.," a startup based in Silicon Valley.
We will be hearing about their company growth; how they became a unicorn startup company with their all-in-one workspace tool "Notion," and their upcoming challenges.
Volume 2：Friday, December 10th 5:00~5:40pm JST
The Human Miracle CEO Kenji Kohashi × Fukuoka City Mayor Soichiro Takashima
「A Challenger's Mindset amidst COVID-19」
Joining this session is Kenji Kohashi, former actor, now creative director and event producer.
We will be hearing about challenges regarding the pandemic, and his views on "events" in the future.
Volume 1：Notion Labs Inc. COO Akshay Kothari
Akshay Kothari is Chief Operating Officer at Notion, where he oversees all of the company's operations. At the start of his career, he co-founded Pulse News, which he led as CEO, redefining the way people access news. Pulse was acquired by LinkedIn in 2013, becoming the foundation of the company's content product line.
At LinkedIn, he oversaw these initiatives as a product leader, and eventually became VP Product and Head of LinkedIn India.
He joined Notion in 2018 after investing in the company early on.
He has his BS from Purdue and MS from Stanford, both in electrical engineering.
Volume 2：The Human Miracle CEO Kenji Kohashi
Born in Tokyo, August 19th, 1979, Kenji Kohashi debuted as a child actor in 1988 and was cast in many TV dramas, films, and plays such as NHK Asadora (morning drama) “Churasan”, and later discontinued his acting career in 2007. After studying in the US and traveling across the globe, he has started to produce films and events. He debuted as a film director in 2012 through “DON’T STOP!”, a documentary of traveling with a man in a wheelchair. Since then, he has executed large overseas events in Japan such as “ULTRA JAPAN” in which he served as the creative director. From 2017, he served as the executive producer of futuristic fireworks entertainment “STAR ISLAND” and received the Jury Special Award in “Cool Japan Matching Forum 2017” sponsored by the Japanese Cabinet Office. At the Tokyo Motor Show in 2019, he organized a night sky spectacle show “CONTACT” using 500 drones and in 2020, he received the Grand Prize・Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Award (Japan Event Grand Prize) in the “6th JACE Event Award”In the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, he served as the show director of the closing ceremony.
He continues to provide a new value to this era through development of “ART BASE ZERO”, an art project that produces new talent, and through his involvement in urban development and regional revitalization.
Fukuoka City Mayor Soichiro Takashima
Born in Oita Prefecture in 1974, Takashima served as a TV announcer for a variety of breakfast television shows after graduating university.
He became the youngest mayor in Fukuoka history when he was elected at 36 years old in December 2010. He was re-elected in 2014 and 2018 after securing a record number of votes for both elections and is now serving a third term.
After achieving the status of National Strategic Special Zone for Fukuoka City in March 2014, Takashima has made deregulation and reform a reality. He has been a strong force in leading Japan’s startup scene.
In 2017, he became the first Japanese mayor to be invited to the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland.
Under the theme of "Beyond Coronavirus", Fukuoka City held a large number of sessions by domestic and foreign entrepreneurs, as well as online exchanges and booth exhibitions between speakers and participants.