Keynote Speakers

Janice Fraser

LEAN UX Expert, UX Designer

Janice is an entrepreneur and interaction designer for web and mobile products. During her 15 years in Silicon Valley, she has raised capital, founded both successful and failed startups, consulted to both large enterprises and early stage firms. Janice was cofounder of design firm Adaptive Path and served as the company’s first CEO. During her tenure, Adaptive Path tripled in staff and revenues, developed and sold a product to Google, coined the term Ajax, and transformed Adaptive Path from a lifestyle partnership to a high-growth firm. – See more at:

San Francisco Crew

Participant Bios

Roddy Lindsay

Software engineer and Entrepreneur

He is the creator of WineGlass, an application that allows diners to snap a photo of a wine list and learn more about each wine using OCR technology (JP: article on  He previously worked as a data scientist and software engineer at Facebook, working on tools for advertising measurement, as well as a popular feature that allows users to add structured feelings and activities to their status updates.

Katie Zacarian

Marketer, Entrepreneur 

Katie Zacarian is pulling together the tech and startup community in Bali. She formerly worked in Product Marketing and Sales for five years at Facebook.

Tim Wood

Product Manager, DJ, Artist

Tim Wood is focused on building a better future for creators and creating a bit of music himself.  He’s the first product guy at Patreon, which allows creators to offer subscriptions directly to fans.  Prior to this, Tim was the head of subscription product at Pandora.  Tim also DJs textured funky tracks as p o p s t a c k and plays guitar with friends, both in the studio and on international tours.

Lauren Nguyen

User-focused marketer, DJ, and Artist

She’s currently the product marketing manager at Sauce Labs. A lifelong musician, she now DJs a wide range of electronic music with an emphasis on bassweight. When she’s not nerding out over music you can probably find her taking care of her orchid collection.

Arjun Banker

Software Developer, Musician

Arjun Banker is a software developer and experiments with electronic and jazz music production. Arjun worked at Facebook for 4 years after stints at Zillow and Microsoft.

Will Stockwell


Will was until recently an engineer at Dropbox where he spent five years. He wrote the first versions of the iOS client, worked on Android partnerships with HTC and Samsung, and lead the mobile engineering team. Before that, he built trading systems for a hedge fund and did research in information security. He is currently traveling, surfing, and exploring interests in music technology.

Ian Grossberg


Ian was initially drawn to software and design through games where he has been a part of small and large titles. Since, he has taken the skills he has learned (read: still learning) on to build products and teams at companies such as Lumosity and Codecademy. Most recently he is exploring more intimate collaborations and personal work in software as well as other mediums.  


Tokyo Crew

Participant Bios

Hannes Graah

Spotify Japan (Director of Japan)

Hannes Graah, director of Spotify Japan, will be speaking on his experience with bringing Spotify to Japan. With Spotify since 2011, Hannes has taken the reins of their next big challenge: breaking into Japan and east Asia. His talk will cover areas from the nature of disruptive innovation, the power of music, how advertising and music are currently working hand in hand as well as an introduction to the Spotify business.

Taro Kodama

Facebook Japan (Country Manager 2009-2014)

Yahoo Japan (Director 1999 – 2009)

Taro Kodama, former Director of Product at Yahoo! Japan assumed the position of representative and country growth manager for Facebook Japan in 2009. During his time at Facebook, Taro helped grow the number of facebook users from 3million users in 2010 to exceed 21million users end of August 2013.

Taj Campbell

Google Maps (Product Manager)

Taj started at Google in California in 2007 on Blogger and then Google Maps, where he built out My Maps, Maps Suggest, Local Reviews and Personalized Search. In 2011, Taj came to Tokyo to help lead an emergent Mobile Maps team (growing from 15 to 60 engineers in 3 years), meanwhile driving the development and design of the new Google Maps for iOS and Android, along with key Local, Search and Personalization features. Carrying his passion for mapping to the world’s most challenging city to navigate, Taj brings a perspective of applying insights from Japan to a truly global product.


Hiro Maeda

Beenos (Managing Partner)

Open Network Lab (Director 2011-2013)

Managing partner of BEENOS, a startup studio and investment program based in Tokyo and San Francisco. Prior to BEENOS, Hiro founded Open Network Lab, a startup accelerator in Tokyo, now one of the most respected accelerator programs in Japan. His portfolio includes startups like Fril, Qiita, Anyperk, Instacart, FundersClub, Virool,Kamcord, and many more!

Natsuko Kikutake

Hitachi Consultiong, Social Innovation and Incubation (Senior Consultant)

PADECO (Senior Consultant 2012-2014)

Natsuko comes from a unique background of Engineering, Architecture and Urban Planning, with projects in over 30 countries across Africa, Americas, Asia, and Europe. Recently joining Hitachi Consulting’s Social Innovation and Incubation team, Natsuko is involved in bringing social media, open/big data, and IoT to the development of cities around the world. 

Hideo Chikaike

Personal VC (founder)

Hideo is the winner of the most recent KDDI ∞ Labo open MEETing ∞ Pitch Event. He will be participating in the KDDI’s Mugen Lab, an accelerator program backed by Japan’s largest VCs KDDI innovation fund and Global Brain. Previously at GMO, Hideo was the founder of its Personal VC Program.

Yuichiro Yamanaka

TofuONE (Founder Designer)

SOYlabo (Architect & Product Designer)

Yuichiro is a renown Architect designing private homes in Japan, who recently dove into the startup scene. Focused on “Time oriented fuctional devices”, TofuONE is working to create a new kind of time-based Contacts & Activity organizer backed by an initial $1million Angel fund.

Nikola Pavesic

Founder (Justa), Product Manager, Startupper/Rugger

After 10 years and 3 continents of adulthood, Nik settled in Tokyo where he is running the Justa project and using all his power, passion and commitment to boost the Japanese startup landscape. With history of change management in international organizations he is convinced radical diversity and transparency can get you/us a long way!

Yu Tazawa

Ex-Business Consultant, Entrepreneur

Taz is a hyper-energetic entrepreneur born in Kobe, Japan, grew up in Japan, Spain, UK, and US. After working at Boston Consulting Group, dealing with clients mainly in Telecom Media and Technology (TMT) industries, Taz is currently involved in numerous startups as an investor, CEO, consultant, and mentor.

Hitoshi Yunoki

CTO & Founder Honeywedding

Hitoshi has worked on many projects in both large and small IT companies. Hi picked up coding at age 4… often joking that his first language is code. Today, he is the CTO of

Naoko Yamanake

Fashion editor / Web Designer

Naoko is a passionate fashion editor / web designer based in Tokyo. He is the founder and organizer of  GIRL’S MeeTALK in Shibuya, a meetup for female entrepreneurs and DO-ers.

Hiro Morita


He is a founder of the next-generation contemporary art gallery, Fm (F-minor). His diverse background includes a career as an aerospace engineer in Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), and a public officer in the Primary Minister’s office overlooking space policy and Ministry of Economy. After participated in an accelerator program in Chicago and graduating from Chicago’s Booth MBA  Program, he embarked on an entrepreneurial career.

Takahiro Miyasaka

Founder and CEO (Chikei)

Chikei Takahiro has just started a company Chikei, meaning landform in Japanese, after working at the Boston Consulting Group. Chikei creates hardware/software products for adventurers and extreme sports lovers. Takahiro is also a passionate snowboarder who devoted 4 years snowboarding around the world.

Megumi Shiobara

Founder and Directer (Mills)

After spending 6.5 years at National Instruments as an Application Engineer, Field Sales Engineer and Product Marketing Engineer, Megumi kick-started a company called Mills with one of a friend and colleague. Mills offers various services and products that help working women, particularly those with children and families.

Adam Gries

Serial Entrepreneur

Adam is a serial entrepreneur and software engineer; sold three companies and built apps and games on iOS and Facebook reaching over 73 million users. Having always been passionate about education Adam is now building products that help people learn on mobile devices.  

Samson Yee

Product Owner (Synergy Marketing), Photographer, Designer

Samson has been living in Japan since 18, he is a photographer, photo editor, web designer, researcher and product owner. He has lived and breathed email marketing for the past year at Synergy Marketing.

Prior to Synergy Marketing, he has spent time working in London and Tokyo. He has served as a Chief Picture Editor at Monthly Editorial Magazine, Courrier Japon, Kodansha. Helping editors and creatives communicate with one another, overcoming cultural differences, time zones.


Rie Yamamoto

Rie was born in London and grew up in the US and Japan; from the experiencing of attending schools in different countries and cities, Rie grew a passion for education. After working at McKinsey & Company as a consultant in various industries including higher education, Rie is currently heading teacher recruitment and training programs at Teach For Japan.

Ryosuke Minami

Student, Future Entrepreneur

Ryosuke is an energetic university student studying at the University of Tokyo. Having spent ten years in the US and nine years in Japan, he has a through understanding of the two cultures as well as a deep respect for each.

Organizers & Mentors

Chiaki Hayashi

Loftworks (CEO & Founder)

MIT Media Lab (Japan Liaison to the Director of MIT Media Lab)

Chiaki Hayashi co-founded Loftwork Inc. in 2000. Loftwork is a new–style creative agency that boasts a network of over 20,000 creators. Each year Loftwork rolls out over 400 projects including web, community and spacial design initiatives. Loftwork also offers an open learning program for creative professionals and talent, OpenCU (Open Creative University), and operates the digital fabrication cafe, FabCafe.

Alisaun Fukugaki

Tech Enthusiast, Finance industries Odd ball

Alisaun is a trend-setting, tech-enthusiast who sees the Tokyo Tech Scene to be the next global hotspot. She believes all it needs is a spark of collaborative friendships to form between Japanese and SF Talents to uncover the true potential of Japan’s Startup Scene.

Nina Mehta

Designer, Writer and Artist Day-to-day she’s product designer at Pivotal Labs practicing lean design with agile engineers. She also does live visual projection art practicing creating immersive experiences. Nina formerly worked at Twilio, Gengo and several startups and news media institutions focused on community, invisible technology and global affairs.

Keigo Fukugaki

Founder & Architect

As an Architect, Keigo helped design Convention Centers, private homes, and bridges before moving to Japan to work in interior and furniture design. Since moving to Tokyo, he noticed countless opportunities within the Japanese Startup Landscape visible only to fresh set of eyes coming from San Francisco. He is now running his own startup and organising events to help boost the Japanese Startup scene.


Shiro Gonoo

Entrepreneur, Product Manager

Shiro is Co-founder of Jalan Japan Inc., a startup focused on taking Japanese fashion to South East Asian countries, such as Indonesia and Malaysia. He manages and develops online stores and fashion web media for Japanese Fashion Brands.

Mitsuo Yoshizawa

Tokyo Tech Scene Guru (TEDxTokyo Organizer)

Mario Sakata

UX Designer & Lean UX Advocate

User Experience Architect at Concent, Inc. an user experience and design strategy firm based in Tokyo. Engaged and leading Enterprise Information Architecture and Service Design strategy for various national clients. Mario is also the translator of the award winning book “Lean UX” from Oreily.