Japanese company to help local start-ups

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN (Borneo Bulletin/ANN) - The Embassy of Japan in Brunei Darussalam hosted a Statement of Intent (SOI) signing ceremony between Panasonic Corporation, a leading Japanese electronic consumer appliances company, and two local higher education institutes, Universiti Teknologi Brunei (UTB) and Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) at the embassy yesterday.

Present to sign on behalf of Panasonic Corporation was Director of the Intellectual Property Centre of Panasonic Corporation Yoshiaki Tokuda, while UBD Assistant Vice-Chancellor (Academic Affairs) Pengiran Dr Mohammad Iskandar bin Pengiran Haji Petra and UTB Assistant Vice-Chancellor (Industry and Services) Haji Ady Syarmin bin Haji Md Taib signed on behalf of the universities.
Japanese Ambassador to Brunei Darussalam Motohiko Kato witnessed the signing ceremony along with Bruneian stakeholders of the pilot project such as Brunei Economic Development Board’s (BEDB) Farah Atiyah binti Zainal, Head of Enterprise Programme at DARe (Darussalam Enterprise) Lim Hang Ping and Director General of Brunei Intellectual Property Office (BruIPO) Shahrinah binti Yusof Khan, as well as Director of Intellectual Property at Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO) Singapore Yutaka Niidome. At a press conference following the signing ceremony, the Japanese Ambassador and the Assistant Vice-Chancellors of UBD and UTB explained that under the pilot project, Panasonic and the two universities will explore the possibility of utilising Panasonic’s
patented technology to develop product prototypes for Bruneian start-up companies.
The underlying idea is to combine the profitable business models of Bruneian entrepreneurs, the developing potential of the universities, and the advanced technology of the Japanese company to create new and competitive products.
The pilot project will also consider ways to create an innovation ecosystem in Brunei.
Panasonic and the universities will commence the pilot project immediately, hoping to find the best scheme for collaboration to boost the competitiveness of Bruneian start-ups and contribute to the empowerment of small, and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Brunei.
Panasonic Corporation is a major supplier to the Intellectual Property market with over 180,000 granted patents and 690,000 patent applications.

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