Cover Image for Agrifood and Climate - Hard-Tech Innovation with Corporate Japan
Cover Image for Agrifood and Climate - Hard-Tech Innovation with Corporate Japan

Agrifood and Climate - Hard-Tech Innovation with Corporate Japan

Hosted by Kyle Valiton & Nobu Kumagai
Past Event
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About Event

Breakthroughs in Agrifood technology are occurring worldwide, with new chemical processing and biotech innovations combining with automation and AI to give traditionally expensive solutions a chance at profitability.

Join us in-person alongside key Japanese corporate experts to discuss recent investments and market opportunities in Agrifood being fostered by Japanese partners working within Silicon Valley.

Akiko Kawai, Manager, Innovation Center Silicon Valley, Kubota Corporation, will be discussing her experiences working with hard-tech companies and how they contribute to the Japanese economy.

Kei Honda, General Manager, Business Development Idemitsu Americas, will be discussing recent investments in alternative energy and fuel production and its future impact on California Agrifood.

This event will be moderated by Nobu Kumagai, Founding Managing Partner, Wildcard Incubator and is hosted at Port Labs in Oakland, CA.

Thank you to these organizations and sponsors for discussing these market opportunities with local Bay Area startup founders and angel investors!


5:30p Doors Open

6:00p Intro from Nobu Kumagai, Wildcard Incubator

6:15p Presentation from Akiko Kawai, Manager of Kubota Innovation Center Silicon Valley

6:30p Presentation from Kei Honda, General Manager of Business Development, Idemitsu America Holdings Corporation

6:45p Panel Discussion [Current Issues for Japanese Innovators vs. How local startups, financial sponsors and communities can involve]

7:10p Q&A Session

7:45~8:30p Mixer Gathering


About our Guest Speakers

Akiko is a Manager at Kubota Innovation Center Silicon Valley, where she is responsible for new agricultural business planning and execution with open innovation including making investment to the US AgriTech startups. Previously, Akiko was an associate manager at Legal Department where she oversaw the legal guidance on investment contracts and the development and implementation of company polices to enhance workflow and ensure legal compliance. Prior to that, she was in product planning and marketing department for Agricultural Machinery, including a working experience in Kubota’s subsidiary in France. Akiko received her Honours Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from University of Toronto, Canada and her bachelor’s degree in law from Chuo University, Japan.

Kei Honda is the General Manager of Business Development at Idemitsu Americas Holdings. With his approximately 20 years of extensive experiences in energy industry, he leads open innovation activities focusing on investment and business engagement opportunities around energy transition, circular economy, and carbon offset solutions. He holds a Bachelor’s in Social Relations from Rikkyo University and an MBA from the University of California, Irvine.


Nobu Kumagai, Founding Managing Partner, Wildcard Incubator

Nobu is the founding managing partner at Wildcard Incubator, a Tokyo and Silicon Valley-based corporate-startup business accelerator with industrial track record and focuses in Agrifood, Greentech and wellness. He also currently serves as guest editorial contributor to CNET Japan and NewsPicks - one of Japan’s largest online business media. Previously he worked for one of Japan’s largest VC funds and a decade in investment banking in Tokyo and New York. He was also part of the co-founding team at a food service startup in Japan. Nobu earned his MBA from Cornell University.

The Venue

Port Labs is a workshop space in Oakland and a quick 20min BART ride from SF. Port Labs fosters collaboration among entrepreneurs, creatives, and tech experts to advance sustainable technology solutions​.

Port Labs
2044 Franklin St, Oakland, CA 94612, USA