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  • June 20, 2017 Swiss software experts turn Pepper into factory worker

    Tokyo (SCCIJ) – The Swiss software boutique consultancy Vigience with offices in Tokyo, Horgen (Switzerland) and San Francisco (USA) has transformed the famous Softbank robot Pepper for the first time globally from a "meet and greet" shop assistant into a useful factory worker at a renowned Toyota supplier in Japan. The achievement was made possible by programming Pepper directly and using an artificial intelligence engine. The cute robot now moves independently on the factory floor, supervises the working conditions in the plant and supports workers when a machine in the production line malfunctions. SCCIJ talked to Vigience founder and CEO Markus Stierli about this progressive project and how it has changed the course of his company. [more]

  • June 16, 2017 Hermès Innovation Prizes for Japan and Switzerland

    Tokyo (SCCIJ) – The Swiss Center for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM), the company Fujifilm and the City of Kyoto have been awarded three of the five Hermès Innovation Prizes in the year 2017. At the service of industry for over 30 years, CSEM has been rewarded the prize for its technological excellence. Fujifilm was lauded for its strategic redeployment and growth through innovation. The City of Kyoto received the Hermès prize for the improvements of the life in the city by renewal, high technology and tradition as well as monozukuri. This award is given every year since 2009 by the Club de Paris des Directeurs de l’Innovation and the European Institute for Creative Strategies and Innovation. This distinction recognizes those companies and organizations that have succeeded in integrating the best state-of-the-art knowledge in products and services, increasing the satisfaction of individuals and society. [more]

  • June 13, 2017 Swiss brands turn Citizen into multinational group

    Tokyo (SCCIJ) – The Japanese watchmaker Citizen has acquired four Swiss watch brands in the last five years. Now, President and CEO Toshio Tokura has called them an “optimal diversification” for the Japanese watch giant which is currently morphing into a multinational watch group. With Swiss timepiece makers such as Frédérique Constant and Alpina, Citizen would be able to cover a larger target group, Tokura said. This in turn has given Citizen the confidence to open its world’s first flagship store. Located in the new luxury shopping complex "Ginza Six", the store houses a full lineup of all the group’s brands, including the first boutique ever of "Arnold & Son". This historic British brand was restarted by the Swiss watch company British Masters and later acquired first by Swiss La Joux-Perret and then by Citizen.[more]

  • June 09, 2017 Swiss Post a global leader in postal development

    Tokyo (SCCIJ) - Swiss Post has taken the first place in the new “Integrated Index for Postal Development” ahead of France and Japan, closely followed by the Netherlands and Germany. The study carried out by the Universal Postal Union (UPU) shows that by international standards Swiss Post is amongst the leading postal organizations with a comprehensive range of services. The study compares a total of 170 postal organizations using four criteria: reliability, reach, relevance and resilience. Members and guests of the SCCIJ already know about the high capabilities of Swiss Post because CEO Susanne Ruoff talked about the ongoing transformation and key projects of the logistics company at a luncheon in April 2016. [more]

  • June 05, 2017 Luncheon: Bridging cultures for high performance

    Tokyo (SCCIJ) – Almost 50 members and guests of the SCCIJ followed May luncheon speaker Hans Jakob Roth on his journey of “bridging cultures in order to turn cross-cultural complexity into high performance vitality”. This was also the title of his talk. At the luncheon, Roth introduced the theoretical model used by the Swiss consulting company “EurAsia Competence” in its assessments, mainly in the Asian and Western European environment. The model is based on the concepts of “proximity” and “distance” where Western and Eastern thinking differ considerably. This would cause challenges to leadership and management in a rapidly changing global environment, Roth said at the luncheon. Solid decisions needed to be based on both concepts, so short and long term horizons could be incorporated at the same time, Roth explained.[more]

  • June 02, 2017 Oerlikon builds new Japan solutions center

    Tokyo (SCCIJ) - Oerlikon is building a new surface solutions center in Nagoya, dedicated to providing the latest technologies and services to the Japanese automotive industry. The investment will allow Oerlikon to meet the requirements of a recently won contract with one of the largest Japanese automotive manufacturers. The center is scheduled to open at the beginning of 2018. Also, Oerlikon’s surface solutions segment showcased its market-leading coating technologies at the Automotive Engineering Exposition in Yokohama on the last weekend in May.[more]

  • May 30, 2017 SCCIJ veteran Ochsner: "Build rather than repair"

    Tokyo (SCCIJ) – Mr. Charles Ochsner, founder and owner of the boutique consultancy CH Projects Management, is one of the few early members of the Swiss Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Japan who is still working and living in the country. He was SCCIJ vice president for many years and the chamber's president from 2002 to 2005. In an interview with the SCCIJ, the Swiss lawyer reveals the motives behind his professional career in Japan, how Swiss and Japanese business cultures differ from each other and how his deep judo experience helped him to succeed in Japan.[more]

  • May 26, 2017 Adecco Group to accelerate growth in Japan

    Tokyo (SCCIJ) – The Switzerland based "The Adecco Group", the world’s leading provider of workforce solutions, has repositioned its permanent placement business in Japan under the Spring Professional brand. Its number of consultants in Japan will be effectively doubled to 500 until 2020 in order to accelerate the expansion of the business in one of the world’s toughest labor markets. Spring Professional is a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Adecco Group and focuses on recruiting middle- to senior-level management and experts in IT, engineering, finance and other professional services. The re-branding in Japan is the outcome of a revision of the group’s overall brand strategy worldwide in January 2017. [more]

  • May 23, 2017 Switzerland and Japan plan closer scientific cooperation

    Tokyo (SCCIJ) – The Swiss councilor Mr. Johann Schneider-Ammann, Head of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research, has described Swiss-Japanese relations as a "well-functioning long-distance relationship". It would work because both partners know each other well, rely on each other and talk quickly if needed, he said at the general assembly of the Swiss-Japanese Chamber of Commerce in Zurich. The Free Trade and Economic Partnership between Switzerland and Japan had created a good framework which could be utilized by Swiss and Japanese companies, the councilor said. Also, Japan would be the most important partner of Switzerland for scientific research, but there would be unused potential, Schneider-Ammann added. But this will change soon: The two countries have just signed a declaration of intent to strengthen their scientific collaboration via their respective research funding agencies.[more]

  • May 19, 2017 New “Swiss Made” obligations are widely followed

    Tokyo (SCCIJ) – The “Swissness” legislation which came into force on 1 January 2017 in Switzerland is supposed to strengthen the protection of the "Made in Switzerland" designation. The intention is to preserve its value in the long term and to provide a foundation for an effective fight against wrongful use. The core of the bill establishes precise rules in the Trade Mark Protection Act concerning the conditions under which a product or service may be labelled as being Swiss by carrying the label “Swiss Made”. Anyone who fulfills these criteria may opt to use the "Made in Switzerland" designation without authorization. Most companies and producers of goods have endorsed the new tightened rules, but some have deliberately renounced its use.[more]

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