The Journal The Authority on Global Business in Japan



Baseball Execs Swap Tips

Three representatives from the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles baseball team visited the United States to learn about how sports teams are managed there (, September 19).

The three visitors work in the enterprise department of Rakuten’s team, and organized the trip in the hope of enhancing fans’ connection to the game. They discussed how, in America, sports seem closer to people’s lives, with members of the public attending games regardless of whether they are fans of the particular sport.

The trio was evaluating ballpark entertainment options that appeal to all ages, and do not depend on understanding baseball. They recommended that US teams might consider employing young girls with kegs on their backs to serve beer, a practice common in Japan, to add to fans’ enjoyment.

Apartments Scoop Three Travel Awards

Oakwood Serviced Apartments has won two 2014 World Travel Awards in Japan (press release, October 11).

Press_2Each year, professionals in the travel and tourism industry across the globe vote to select winners. In Japan, the company took the title for Japan’s Leading Serviced Apartment Brand and Japan’s Leading Serviced Apartments, the latter award going to the Oakwood Premier Tokyo Midtown property. The company also won a top-tier award in India.

According to Managing Director of Oakwood Asia Pacific Dean Schreiber, “… Such recognition is particularly reinforcing, as we accelerate our growth into markets to meet the continuing as well as emerging needs of our globally mobile clients and guests.”

Partnership Hailed at Regional Meeting
The head of Lockheed Martin emphasized the importance of lasting ties between the United States and Japan at the October 2014 U.S.–Japan Council Annual Conference in Honolulu (MarketWatch, October 13).

This was the fifth annual summit of its kind, each event bringing together over 500 leaders from business, academia, government, and nonprofit sectors to discuss issues surrounding US–Japan relations. This year’s theme was “U.S.–Japan Connections: Contributing to Growth, Security and Sustainability.”

Lockheed’s Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Marillyn Hewson noted in the keynote address that the countries’ bilateral security alliance ensures stability in the Asia–Pacific region.

Cloud Services Ease Network Settings
NTT Communications Corporation has announced an upgrade to the consumer portal of its Enterprise Cloud service (Business Wire, October 8).

The new services include on-demand management of cloud-connected Internet and VPN circuits, as well as cloud-based settings for server and network segments in virtual servers. There will be no charge for the new functions.

Operating cloud infrastructure requires a company to jointly manage the cloud and network (see page 30). Often, however, changes on one side are not reflected right away on the other, making centralizing operations difficult, if not impossible.

Until now, network operations within this framework have been challenging, but Enterprise Cloud promises to reduce the workload and enable direct management of network settings.