Brompton Bicycles Riding High in Japan

Will Butler-Adams, Brompton Bicycles Ltd Managing Director, says the first step for companies hopeful for success in Japan is to just “get on a plane.”

The iconic fold-up bicycle made by Brompton Bicycle Ltd has become a symbol of British quality, urban cool and smart transportation. Will Butler-Adams, Brompton’s managing director, visited the British Embassy Tokyo in May 2014, for a special ceremony to hand-over a bicycle as a gift to HM Ambassador Tim Hitchens. During the visit he shared his insights into doing business in Japan and gave advice to small-to-medium sized companies hoping to chase the Japanese Dream. It goes without saying that bicycle-crazy Tokyo has firmly embraced the neat Brompton fold-up.

Japan is “one of our longest standing export markets,” he said, adding that it is also the largest market globally, emphasising the importance of the country for Brompton’s business.  For small companies hoping to expand into Japan, Butler-Adams insists on a hands-on approach: getting on a plane, seeing Japan for yourself, making business contacts and learning as much as you can about the industry. Businesses should reach out to UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) and the British Embassy Tokyo: “let them do a bit of research to help you out, set up a few meetings,” he said.

By laying down the groundwork, Butler-Adams says that you will find a compatible and trustworthy business partner, pointing out that their success in Japan comes down to their trustworthy relationship with Mizutani Bicycles Ltd.


Watch the video for more of the Brompton Bicycles’ advice on doing business in Japan.

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