January 14-15 | A Hybrid Event

PROGRAMME

Homecoming: Travel Zero.O To Infinity.O ∞

Venue: TKPガーデンシティPREMIUM京橋
2 Chome-2-1 Kyobashi, Chuo City, Tokyo 104-0031, Japan
On-Demand Coming Soon
Day 1
2022-01-14
Day 2
2022-01-15
09:00 - 10:00
Checking in
10:00 - 10:15
Welcome Home To Tokyo

An extra special welcome and opening to the ninth edition of WiT Japan & North Asia. Welcome to our brave new, hybrid world.

Welcome Home To Tokyo image
Yeoh Siew Hoon
Founder
WiT
Welcome Home To Tokyo image
Kei Shibata
CEO, Venture Republic
- TRAVEL.jp & Trip101
Welcome Home To Tokyo image
Aya Aso
Founder & CEO, SAVVY Collective/
Co-founder & CEO, PerkUP
10:15 - 10:40
From Unicorn to Decacorn: A Lesson In Globalisation

In the last two years, no one captured the headlines more than South Korea’s travel unicorn, Yanolja. After a fund raise of US$1.7b, it went on an expansion and acquisition spree, buying 70% of Interpark’s business division as well as acquiring adtech company, Dable, in December. It also sealed partnerships with VNLIFE, Vietnam’s largest fintech play, to expand in travel, and has declared its ambitions to be “number one travel company in the world’ as a global SaaS provider and to go from unicorn to decacorn. Thus, there’s no better note to start the new year than to put the spotlight on an Asian brand that globalised even as global brands retreated to domestic and regional plays.

 

Interviewer:

 

Yeoh Siew Hoon
Founder
WiT

 
 

Speaker:
From Unicorn to Decacorn: A Lesson In Globalisation image
Jong Yoon Kim
CEO
Yanolja & Yanolja Cloud
10:40 - 10:50
The Top Headlines In Global & Asia Pacific Online Travel Trends

No one gives a better overview of the online travel market than Phocuswright which has been analysing the market since 1994. Here’s the latest look at top trends in both the global and APAC online travel space.

The Top Headlines In Global & Asia Pacific Online Travel Trends image
Kimberly Newbury
Vice President, Sales, Global Travel Technology Group
Northstar Travel Media Singapore
10:50 - 11:25
Global OTAs, Looking In

How are the global travel brands which had to largely retreat on cross-border travel in Asia Pacific coming out of the pandemic, and how have they taken the opportunity to dig deeper into local markets to come out stronger?

 

Moderator:

 

Yeoh Siew Hoon
Founder
WiT

 

 

Panelists:
Global OTAs, Looking In image
Laura Houldsworth
Managing Director & Vice President, Asia Pacific
Booking.com
Global OTAs, Looking In image
Timothy Hughes
Vice President, Corporate Development
Agoda
Global OTAs, Looking In image
Michael Dykes
Senior Director, Market Management, Northeast Asia
Expedia Group
11:25 - 11:50
And Now, For The Latest Happenings From South Korea

When will Asia Pacific’s second largest outbound market get back on its feet? And when it does, what will happen? Who will grab the spoils of recovery?

 

Moderator:

 

Timothy Hughes
Vice President, Corporate Development
Agoda

 

 

Panelists:
And Now, For The Latest Happenings From South Korea image
Min Yoon
CEO
Tidesquare
And Now, For The Latest Happenings From South Korea image
Myunghoon Chung
CEO
GC Company
11:50 - 12:30
From The Home Team: Bringing Japan Home

The country’s leading OTAs share their take on what’s happened to their business during the pandemic, how they have adapted and how they intend to raise their fortunes in the recovery that’s coming.

 

Moderator:

 

Kei Shibata
Co-founder & CEO
Venture Republic – TRAVEL.jp & Trip101

 

 

Panelists:
From The Home Team: Bringing Japan Home image
Hiroyuki Morisaki
Head of Web Sales & Marketing, Executive Officer
JTB Corp.
From The Home Team: Bringing Japan Home image
Michinari Miyata
Division Officer
Recruit
From The Home Team: Bringing Japan Home image
Ryunosuke Makihata
Executive Officer, Director of Lodging Business Second Division & Director of Sales & Marketing
Ikyu
From The Home Team: Bringing Japan Home image
Yoshiyuki Takano
Head of Travel & Mobility Business, Vice President,
Commerce Company Executive Officer, Rakuten Group, Inc.
12:30 - 13:30
Lunch Break
13:30 - 13:45
The Endemic Traveller

Who will the post-Covid traveller be? How will they travel? Revealing insights on the changing traveller culled from research done by Google based on apps and consumer-based data.

The Endemic Traveller image
Hermione Joye
Sector Lead, Travel & Vertical Search APAC
Google
13:45 - 14:05
Coffee Chat: Reinventing Japanese Outbound

At a time when outbound travel from Japan was diminished, one entrepreneur decided to start a new business designed to change the way holiday packages are designed, and managed to raise funds. In this conversation, we find out how the founder of Relux, and now Reiwa, intends to blaze his path into the future of outbound travel from Japan.

 

Interviewer:

 

Yeoh Siew Hoon
Founder
WiT

 

 

Speaker:
Coffee Chat: Reinventing Japanese Outbound image
Takaya Shinozuka
CEO & Founder
Reiwa Travel
14:05 - 14:15
Airlines & Sustainability

Airlines are facing huge pressures on the sustainability front. Presenting an “Aviation Sustainability and The Environment Report” published for the first time.

Airlines & Sustainability image
David Wills
Executive Director
Envest Global
14:15 - 14:30
Winning consumer love through payments



Digital transformation has accelerated across Asia in the past two years and consumer behaviours have shifted greatly. Find out what are some of the key payment trends to keep top of minds and where the post-pandemic opportunities lie for travel and hospitality to win the hearts of the evolving consumers.

Winning consumer love through payments

 image
Chikao Yoshida
Team Lead - Sales, Japan
Adyen
14:30 - 14:50
Coffee Chat: The Coming Home of Klook

Its journey to unicorn started at WiT Japan & North Asia 2015 when it won the Startup of the Year. It grew spectacularly until … well, we all know what happened. But Covid has taught this young executive tough lessons and Klook has created new opportunities for itself in a very changed travel landscape. Let’s find out its plans and how it sees the future in this homecoming interview.

 

Interviewer:

 

Yeoh Siew Hoon
Founder
WiT

 

 

Speaker:
Coffee Chat: The Coming Home of Klook image
Eric Gnock Fah
COO & Co-founder
Klook
14:50 - 15:20
Coffee Break
15:20 - 15:50
Corporate Travel: What Has Changed Forever?

It was the sector that was hit the hardest. And as corporations learn what they can do without, but also what they can’t live without, how will the corporate travel sector return? And what are the solutions out there that will facilitate recovery and confidence among travellers?

 

Moderator:

 

Yeoh Siew Hoon
Founder
WiT

 
 

Panelists:
Corporate Travel: What Has Changed Forever? image
Kei Shibata
CEO, Venture Republic
- TRAVEL.jp & Trip101
Corporate Travel: What Has Changed Forever? image
Johnny Thorsen
Vice President, Strategy & Partnerships
Spotnana
Corporate Travel: What Has Changed Forever? image
Bertrand Saillet
Managing Director
FCM Travel Solutions Asia
15:50 - 16:10
Coffee Chat: Cruising To A New Horizon

It was the first cruise line to resume operations in South and North Asia, starting with Singapore, then Hong Kong, Taiwan and on December 22, it resumed cruises in Malaysia. And up to last December, it had carried 400,000 passengers since the pandemic started. How is this Asia-based cruise giant planning for the future of cruising in what is one of the world’s biggest emerging market and destination for cruising?

 

Interviewer:

 

Yeoh Siew Hoon
Founder
WiT

 

 

Speaker:
Coffee Chat: Cruising To A New Horizon image
Michael Goh
President, Dream Cruises & Head of International Sales
Genting Cruise Lines
16:10 - 16:20
Trends to Watch In Marketing

Partnerships are the way forward when it comes to customer acquisition in the new competitive and expensive landscape. An expert shares tips on how to leverage partnerships in marketing.

Trends to Watch In Marketing image
Adam Brownstein
General Manager, Japan & Asia Pacific
Partnerize
16:20 - 16:50
Come Home to Niseko and Kyoto

We put the spotlight on two of Japan’s most popular inbound destinations and find out what lessons they have learnt and how they plan to build back better.

 

Moderator:

 

Ashley Harvey
Japan Tourism
Expert‎

 

 

Panelists:
Come Home to Niseko and Kyoto image
Kou Sundberg
Founder
Kiraku
Come Home to Niseko and Kyoto image
Yu Aoki
CEO
MATCHA Inc.
Come Home to Niseko and Kyoto image
Fumiko Kato
CEO & Founder
WAmazing
Come Home to Niseko and Kyoto image
Afra Rahman
CEO & Founder
JAPAN PRIVATE TOUR
16:50 - 17:20
Coffee Chat: Womenomics: A Goal Too Far or Within Reach?

Formerly with Goldman Sachs for two decades, Kathy Matsui is now general partner of Japan’s first ESG-focused global venture capital fund, MPower Partners. Her vision is to empower women entrepreneurs and invest and advise startups on their journey to growth. She wrote her first report on “womenomics” in 1999, arguing that diversity makes for better performing companies and economies. We find out what progress has been made in workplace diversity in Japan and her plans for her $150 million fund.

Coffee Chat: Womenomics: A Goal Too Far or Within Reach? image
Kathy Matsui
General Partner
MPower Partners
17:20
It’s A Wrap
09:30 - 10:30
Checking in
10:30 - 10:40
Welcome Home To WiT Japan & North Asia
10:40 - 10:55
Welcome to Japan

An opening presentation that sets the stage for Day Two of WiT Japan & North Asia 2021. Get insights into how Japan is positioning itself for inbound travel post-pandemic.

Welcome to Japan image
Akiko Yoshida
Executive Senior Vice President
Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO)
10:55 - 11:25
Taiwan: Turning A Moment in History Into Opportunity

We visit Taipei to get an update on the Taiwan market and startup ecosystem and find out what new ideas have emerged and what new players have strengthened their proposition at this time.

 

Moderator:

 

Daniel Cheng
Founder & President
RTM Association (Redefine Tourism Mixer)

 

 

Panelists:
Taiwan: Turning A Moment in History Into Opportunity image
James Lee
Founder & CEO
MomentX
Taiwan: Turning A Moment in History Into Opportunity image
Gina Tsai
President
Creative Tourism & Community Design Association, Taiwan
Taiwan: Turning A Moment in History Into Opportunity image
Ryan Seng
Head of Strategic Investment
Lion Travel Service Co., Ltd.
11:25 - 12:00
Startup Showcase, Part 1

In this session, our selected startups pitch their business to you in 5 minutes each and get questioned by our panel of dragons. You get to vote for your People’s Choice.

 

Startups:

 

Hidenori Miyamoto
CEO
Liigo Inc

 

 

Sota Kimura
CEO
SmartRyde Inc

 

 

Rina Nagaoka
CEO
Otetsutabi

 

 

Yosuke Homma
CEO
StayList

 

 

 

Dragons:
Startup Showcase, Part 1 image
Ren Tanaka
Partner, Operating Group
SoftBank Investment Advisers
Startup Showcase, Part 1 image
Hironori Katsuse
President & Representative Director
Trip.com International Travel Japan
Startup Showcase, Part 1 image
Kenichi Shibata
Co-founder & COO
Venture Republic - TRAVEL.jp
12:00 - 13:00
Lunch Break
13:00 - 13:40
Startup Showcase, Part 2

Round 2 – in this session, our selected startups pitch their business to you in 5 minutes each and get questioned by our panel of dragons. You get to vote for your People’s Choice.

 

Startups:

 

Yuya Sasaki
CEO
Star Resort Inc

 

 

Kazuhisa Takahashi
CEO
tripla corporation

 

 

Genri Goto
CEO/Founder
Kotozna

 

 

Darren Wang
Founder & CEO
Owlting Group

 

 

 

 

Dragons:
Startup Showcase, Part 2 image
Ren Tanaka
Partner, Operating Group
SoftBank Investment Advisers
Startup Showcase, Part 2 image
Hironori Katsuse
President & Representative Director
Trip.com International Travel Japan
Startup Showcase, Part 2 image
Kenichi Shibata
Co-founder & COO
Venture Republic - TRAVEL.jp
13:40 - 14:10
Hospitality Unravelled & Transformed

It was a time when consumer behavior changed and direct buying became the norm. But will it remain that way when recovery returns? Will it swing back towards those with scale, reach and ability to inspire, capture and convert? How are major hospitality brands rethinking distribution and marketing?

 

Moderator:

 

Aya Aso
Founder & CEO, SAVVY Collective
Co-founder & CEO, PerkUP

 

 

Panelists:
Hospitality Unravelled & Transformed image
Abhijay Sandilya
Managing Director - Japan, IHG Hotels & Resorts/
CEO, IHG ANA Hotels Group Japan
Hospitality Unravelled & Transformed image
Sam Sakamura
Vice President, Japan & Micronesia
Hyatt (Japan) Co., Ltd
Hospitality Unravelled & Transformed image
Tadashi Inoue
President & CEO
Solare Hotels & Resorts
14:10 - 14:40
Indie & Alternative: The Changing Wave in Hospitality

Some argue that this period favours the small, nimble and agile. You can pivot faster to capture hyper local demand. Yet some argue that in the big and expanding world of ecommerce, it will be harder and harder for small and niche to be discovered by travellers – unless you’re smart and offer differentiated experiences. We find out from those doing it differently.

 

 

Co-Moderators:

 

Aya Aso
Founder & CEO, SAVVY Collective/
Co-founder & CEO, PerkUP

 

 

Kei Shibata
CEO, Venture Republic
– TRAVEL.jp & Trip101

 

 

Panelists:
Indie & Alternative: The Changing Wave in Hospitality image
Munekatsu Ota
Representative Director
Rakuten LIFULL STAY, Inc
Indie & Alternative: The Changing Wave in Hospitality image
Atsuo Mori
Territory Manager
Airbnb Japan
14:40 - 14:50
Guest Reviews And Insights Into Traveller Trends

The pandemic has changed traveller needs and priorities ­– contactless technology and enhanced cleanliness measures have become the new hygiene, along with sustainability. Here’s how you can use guest reviews and guest data to make your business more productive and innovative.

Guest Reviews And Insights Into Traveller Trends image
Nao Shitara
Senior Vice President, Global Sales TrustYou GmbH/
Managing Director, TrustYou Japan
14:50 - 15:20
Coffee Break
15:20 - 15:50
The Way We Live, Work & Play: The Blurring of Lines

Covid’s been tough on travel but it’s liberated us from old constructs on how we thought about work, life and play. It showed us what is essential, what is possible, what we can or cannot do without. Meet the players who are addressing these changes in the workplace.

 

Moderator:

 

Kenichi Shibata
Co-founder & COO
Venture Republic – TRAVEL.jp

 

 

Panelists:
The Way We Live, Work & Play: The Blurring of Lines image
Takashi Sabetto
Founder & President
ADDress
The Way We Live, Work & Play: The Blurring of Lines image
Mai Sato
Founder & CEO
Share Wing Co., Ltd.
The Way We Live, Work & Play: The Blurring of Lines image
Isa Saito
Founder & CEO,AnyWhere/
Co-Founder & COO, PerkUP
15:50 - 16:00
Spotlight: It’s All In The Family

Japan is home to thousands of businesses that have remained in family hands for more than a century and one major challenge is that of succession as well as knowledge and skills exchange. A new initiative called Family Business Innovation Lab aims to address that opportunity.

Spotlight: It’s All In The Family image
Satoki Endo
Division Manager, Business Development Division
NN Insurance
16:00 - 16:10
The Future of Transportation and Mobility

We get insights into the evolving world of mobility from a founder whose mission is to create a business “to deliver seamless and new mobility services that are not only simple and convenient to use” and “at the same time, address the challenges relating to mobility for vulnerable group of users (elderly, children, mobility-challenged, etc)”. Its higher purpose is to give all access “To All Places, for All People, by All Ways, with All Organisations & Technology”. This year, it introduced “Mobi” Community Mobility in Shibuya and has signed a partnership with KDDI, one of Japan’s largest telcos, to deliver this service.

The Future of Transportation and Mobility image
Shigetaka Murase
CEO
WILLER, Inc.
16:10 - 16:40
The Future of Destination Experiences

At a time when the world went local, in-destination experiences managed to hold their ground and those who had a leg in this space found that, well, at least they had this leg to stand on. They didn’t stand still though, they pivoted, innovated, consolidated – what they look today is very different from what they looked like pre-this age of Covid. We catch up with key players in this space and delve into how they see the future of possibilities.

 

Moderator:

 

Kei Shibata
Co-founder & CEO
Venture Republic – TRAVEl.jp & Trip101

 

 

Panelists:
The Future of Destination Experiences image
Takaaki Umezawa
Chairperson, CIC Japan/ Japan Chairman, A.T. Kearney Director
Japan Nighttime Economy Association (JNEA)
The Future of Destination Experiences image
Wataru Futagi
President & CEO
VELTRA
The Future of Destination Experiences image
Tomohisa Yamano
Founder & CEO
ASOVIEW Inc.
16:40 - 17:00
Coffee Chat: “Continuing On Is Power”

There’s a Japanese saying, 継続は力なり (keizoku wa chikara nari). Translated in English, it means, “Continuing on is power” or “don’t give up.” Well, this 108-year-old travel giant that pioneered travel in Japan is certainly continuing on despite the challenges it’s had to face these past two years. We find out what powers it plans to tap on as it blazes the trail ahead to a new future.

 

Interviewer:

Yeoh Siew Hoon
Founder
WiT

 

 

Speaker:
Coffee Chat: “Continuing On Is Power” image
Eijiro Yamakita
President & CEO
JTB Corp.
17:00
It’s A Wrap
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Programme correct at time of publishing
All times shown are in Japan Standard Time (GMT+9)