In charge of industrial development; Industrial Economic Affairs Department, Industrial Tourism Division, Sumida City
Sumida City paid attentions to the issue of successors from the early stage, and opened Frontier Sumida Academy, a business school for second generation business managers. It has developed unique industrial support initiatives, including Strategy of the Sumida Area Brand, and achieved effects. Utilizing TOKYO SKYTREE ® that opened in 2012 as one of its tourism resources, the City have advance new initiatives, we hear. We interviewed Satoshi Uemura and Junko Aoda, both Unit Managers in charge of industrial development; Industrial Economic Affairs Department, Industrial Tourism Division, Sumida City, regarding the Now of Sumida City.
Sumida City has been known as a town of Manufacturing for a long time, and is the region where various industries, including machine metals, paper, rubber, and leather, exist. Based on the survey conducted in 1970s, the City predicted that the successor issue would be a problem in the future and started taking measures from the early stage. In 2004 we opened Frontier Sumida Academy, a business school for cultivating second generation business managers, on which you kindly wrote an article in the publication of Highly Recommended Municipal Information. Graduates have exceeded 100 this year, who have aggressively participated in implementing Strategy of the Sumida Area Brand. We appreciate the very good value chain.
TOKYO SKYTREE ® was completed in April 2012, and Sumida Machidokoro was located on the 5th floor of TOKYO Solamachi® East Yard. We prepared a space for exhibiting and selling Sumida Modern brand goods, which are certified under the Strategy of the Sumida Area Brand, and we could have an opportunity for appealing the brand to quite many people including foreign tourists. In addition we ran a booth for Sumida Bland certified goods at the 75th Tokyo International Gift Show Spring and the 8th Kodawari Shokuhin Fair (FOOD TABLE in Japan) 2013, respectively. Many people got to know about the brand, which leads to inquiries from department stores. We, therefore, could participate in many events.
While promoting the exhibit and sale business at Sumida Machidokoro located in TOKYO SKYTREE ®, we held an event of Sumi Fa, i.e. visiting factories in Sumida City. This event was for the customers, who are interested in Sumida Modern brand goods, to get out of TOKYO SKYTREE ® and experience the Moozukuri (manufacturing) of Sumida City by visiting factories.
From the 23rd to the 25th of November, 2012, we carried out visits to factories and studios in the City, which included factory outlet sale and workshops. We didn’t use any paid media for announcement, but only used personal communications through FACEBOOK and Twitter. As a result a total of 3,000 people participate in the event.
The event brought new encounters among the participants. For example, a bag designer, who sought for special clasps, got to meet a clasp factory at the event, and they started developing products—such collaborations the event realized. The City will support local planning committees and continue holding the Sumi Fa events.
It is important to implement carefully each business under the Strategy of the Sumida Area Brand, which we have launched, we assume. We seek for further sales channel expansion, including foreign markets.
Industrial Tourism Division, Sumida City
Address: 1-23-20, Azumabashi, Sumida-ku, Tokyo