Participating teams selected for CIRCULAR STARTUP TOKYO, a circular economy startup incubation program!

April 20, 2024

We are pleased to announce the participants of “CIRCULAR STARTUP TOKYO,” a circular economy startup incubation program specializing in the circular economy.

CIRCULAR STARTUP TOKYO is a 5-month incubation program for those who aim to start a new business, create a new business, or raise funds in the circular economy field, which has recently been attracting attention due to climate change, loss of biodiversity, and increased risk of resource constraints.

Experts, researchers, and start-up entrepreneurs with expertise in the circular economy field will serve as lecturers, mentors, and advisors to enhance the resolution of vein-side issues such as resource recovery and recycling from the early planning and development stages of new materials, products, and services. The program will support business development based on the realization of a circular value chain and accelerate the construction of an eco-system for the transition to a circular economy in Tokyo and Japan.

Comments from CIRCULAR STARTUP TOKYO participants

This time, 177 people participated in the program information session, and a total of 50 groups applied for the program. After screening through application documents and interviews, 16 groups and 24 participants were finally selected.

Naoki Abe (Fan Circle Inc.)

Under the theme of “sports leading the way in ecology,” we will challenge to build a world-class circular business model involving the sports industry. I would like to spend the next five months refining my business idea while discussing various issues and concerns with my mentors, and I would like to grow as a person.

Keiichi Fujishiro and Masami Terada (Oki Circular Design Seminar Lab)

It is our sincere pleasure to participate in CIRCULAR STARTUP TOKYO. Through this program, we hope to provide an experience of “a journey into the circulation of things” and create an opportunity to focus on the importance of circulation and the “abundance that already exists. We look forward to working together with all participants to realize a journey that will bring about spiritual richness.

Seiki Fukudome (LiNK LLC)

We will accelerate behavioral changes toward a circular economy by solving issues in the latter half of the fashion industry’s LCA (after the products are handed over to consumers) with “Web3 infrastructure with creativity” and further stakeholder participation through CST.

Munehiro Honda (New Business Creation Department, Mitsubishi Estate Co., LTD.)

I am in charge of Ecofurni, Mitsubishi Estate’s reused furniture pick-up and sales service. It was launched as an in-house venture and is now in its third fiscal year. I am participating in this program in order to further sublimate the business!

Hiroki Iwasawa

Japan’s domestic wastewater treatment system has a wide range of problems, such as wastewater dripping down the drain, dysfunctional septic tanks, low removal rates of synthetic detergents at some sewage treatment plants, and the generation of large amounts of industrial waste. In order to solve these problems, we hope this program will provide hints to help realize the transition to a recycling-oriented society.

Satoshi Kishi, Yuji Hayashi (naoseru Inc.)

Naoseru is creating a circulation platform to redistribute refurbishable broken devices such as broken smartphones to businesses that repair and resell them. Through this program, we hope to accelerate the creation of a mechanism to make it easier to collect and sell broken devices that are lying around at home.

Yutaro Koyanagi (JOYCLE Corporation)

We are delighted to have been selected for this excellent program. We believe that the word “competition” is unnecessary in the circular economy field, and we are very grateful to have this opportunity to create “collaboration.” Through this program, I would like to work with everyone to bring closer to the realization of our goal, “the creation of a society where resources and joy (JOY) circulate (CYCLE).

Junya Kubo (Heritage Corporation)

This startup operates the sustainable fashion brand CRAFSTO. We plan and sell products that utilize environmentally friendly materials. The company has been involved in the use of eco-friendly materials since early on, and has accumulated expertise in the production of environmentally friendly materials that are difficult to handle. We feel that we could use your support to help us grow into a brand that can be successful on a global scale.

Mayuko Miyagaki and Benoit Mantel (HELSINKINOKO Co., Ltd.)

We are looking forward to receiving quality input from renowned experts on the characteristics of the Japanese market and circular economy in terms of sustainable consumption, and based on this knowledge, we hope to develop our business in Japan in earnest, which we have started in Finland. I am also looking forward to networking with other participants and receiving good inspiration for business development!

Ryota Namba (EcoLoopers Inc.)

I am very honored to have the opportunity to work with experts in the field of circular economy and participants with wonderful aspirations for the program. With the help of the experts, we will strive to create a business that will have an impact commensurate with the enormous amount of resources that are disposed of in the area of resource recycling.

Junji Ohkawa (Liberonto)

CIRCULAR STARTUP TOKYO is a community of people with a wide range of expertise, and I feel that it has the potential to create a world-leading ecosystem in Japan through the creation of multiple startups that spin out from here. We look forward to collaborating within CIRCULAR STARTUP TOKYO based on our high vision.

Ayaka Ono

I am very honored to be selected for this program. Through this program, I would like to make essentially “comfortable spaces” for us humans a commonplace in “residential” spaces around the world. Solving problems such as climate change is not a “must” but a “fun” way to live a comfortable life. I would like to create innovation with my colleagues through “fun.”

Tomonobu Shigeta (PHI Corporation)

By forming professional human resource alliances and promoting ESD, inter-municipal and inter-company matching, and regional resource recycling, we will build a “growth-oriented resource independent economy” and a “circular economy model as Japanese culture” and make Japan a global leader in the circular economy. I hope to play a part in making Japan a global leader in the circular economy.

Hiroto Takahashi (Kajima Corporation)

I applied to CIRCULAR STARTUP TOKYO because I want to explore a different way of urban development from the scrap-and-build approach from the perspective of the construction and real estate industry. I would like to make a difference in Japan’s belief in new construction!

Yoshinari Takahashi (YTRO DESIGN INSTITUTE)

I am working on a design/art project called “NULL” to create a new way of manufacturing by using scrap wood and natural materials as paint. I would like to increase the input for the commercialization of the project by connecting the practical knowledge I have accumulated so far and move forward toward the realization of the project through the power of co-creation with like-minded people.

Mika Yamaoka

I want to eat vegetables 10 years from now! With this in mind, we have embarked on a journey to establish a circular food system, and at CIRCULAR STARTUP TOKYO, we will gain an understanding of essential circular business design, be introduced to PoC fields, and move forward with the commercialization of our business. We are currently recruiting members, so please contact us if you are interested.

*Alphabetical order, titles omitted

Program Overview

The briefing session of this program

  • Program period: Tuesday, April 16, 2024 – Saturday, August 3, 2024
  • Program Contents:
    • Incubation (4 kick-off incubation lectures)
    • Mentoring (exclusive mentoring, specialist mentoring, secretariat mentoring)
    • Demo Day (interim and final)
  • Number of applicants: 16 groups (24 people, maximum 2 people per group)
  • Operating company: Harch Inc.
  • For the report on this program’s information session, click here

Program partners and media partners are still being recruited!

CIRCULAR STARTUP TOKYO has 25 program partners (as of April 8). We are still looking for companies, organizations, investors, and media who are interested in working together with us to create startups, invest in startups, and build an ecosystem in the circular economy field.

Click here for a list of program partners.


CIRCULAR STARTUP TOKYO is a program run by Harch Corporation, which operates the Circular Economy Hub, a media platform for the Circular Economy, is developing a start-up support program for start-ups specializing in the Circular Economy as part of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government’s “TOKYO SUTEAM” project.

[Reference] Participating teams have been selected for CIRCULAR STARTUP TOKYO, a startup foundation support program specializing in the Circular Economy! | Press release (in Japanese)
[Related Site] Circular Economy Hub (in Japanese)