UPDATE EARTH Competition is one of the largest business competitions in Japan. It's open to people of various ages and business backgrounds, from students to entrepreneurs, and consists of two categories: the NIPPON INNOVATION AWARD and the NIPPON INNOVATION TRYOUT. It aims to discover and support the development of new innovative human resources and reserves, as well as to create unprecedented business ideas by increasing opportunities for matching various players and companies, expanding public recognition and cultivation of entrepreneurs, and acquiring PR opportunities. In collaboration with innovation awards and contests throughout Japan, we will invite prominent entrepreneurs, investors, supporters, and judges who are active worldwide to present awards to the most notable entrepreneurs and startups in Japan today. In addition, the event facilitates networking opportunities will be provided for attendees and speakers on the day of the event, with the aim of further revitalizing Japan's innovation scene.
Uncovering business ideas
We are looking for business ideas that have the potential to "UPDATE the Earth".
Details of Application
  • Unique ideas that have the potential to have a significant impact on society in space, agriculture,education, sports, medicine, food, tourism, environment, security, ICT, web3, metaverse/XR, local revitalization, and so on.
  • Innovative technologies by you or your organization
  • Issues and solutions to global problems that you have discovered.
  • etc.
  • Eligible applicants
    Individuals, organizations, start-ups, etc. (regardless of age or position) who are innovators with ideas or technologies that aim to UPDATE the planet.
    Award Prizes
  • Grand Prize 10 million yen
  • Cooperation with the adopted project
  • Sponsor Prize Depends on each prize
  • Area Prizes Depends on each area
  • Awards from the Cooperation Contest
  • Recommendation
    The NIPPON INNOVATION AWARD also accepts applications for recommendation. If you know of an individual, group, or corporation with a breakthrough business idea, please click the “Recommend” button below and enter the candidate’s information.
    We will also recognize individuals and organizations that support innovators. If you know of any supporters who have been involved in the Innovators’ activities or who have helped the Innovators in the past, please fill out the form when submitting your nomination. You can fill out the form by clicking the “Apply” button or “Recommend” button below.

    You can also use this form to recommend a supporter who has already applied in a different category.
    Business Development Support
    For "Born Global Entrepreneurs" we are committed to providing a conducive business growth environment, and offer a variety of business growth support such as investment and PR to ensure their success.
    Details of Application
  • Solutions and business plans for issues that have a significant impact on society on a global scale
  • Business plans that give form to challenging ideas that bring about disruptive innovation
  • etc.
  • Eligible applicants
  • Startups and entrepreneurs who wish to represent Japan in the global UPDATE and wish to receive investment and business development support. TRYOUT Support
  • TRYOUT Support
  • Development support 5-30 million yen, total amount of 300 million yen (planned)
  • Preferential investment negotiation rights for UPDATE EARTH membership companies
  • Commercialization/Growth Support

  • Recommendation
    NIPPON INNOVATION TRYOUT also accepts nomination applications. If you know of a startup or prospective startup that has the ambition to represent Japan in UPDATE EARTH and would like to invest in or support its business development, please click the “Recommend” button below and enter the candidate’s information. We will also recognize individuals and organizations that support innovators. If you have any supporters whom you would like to nominate, such as those who have been involved with the company on a regular basis, or those who have helped the company in the past, please fill out the form when applying. You can fill out the form by clicking the “Apply” button or “Recommend” button below.
    You can also use this form to recommend a supporter who has already applied in a different category.
    Supporters' Recommendation
    We accept nominations from supporters (individuals, companies, organizations, local governments, etc.) who support innovators and contribute to the UPDATE of the planet. If you have any supporters around you that you would like to nominate, such as people you are involved with or have helped in the past, please fill out the form when applying for the program.
    Eligible applicants
  • We accept nominations from supporters (individuals, companies, organizations, local governments, etc.) who support innovators and contribute to the UPDATE of the Earth. If you have any supporters around you that you would like to nominate, such as someone you are involved with or have helped in the past, please fill out the form when submitting your application.
  • スケジュール
    Please check each category section for details. Please understand that the schedule may change without notice.
    Tadashi Fukuda
    UPDATEEARTH Foundation / Chairman
    Kadokawa ASCII Research Institute / CEO
    Born in Osaka, Japan. Graduated from Boston College, USA. Studied computer science. After working for a food manufacturer, became involved in projects supporting the use of computers by people with disabilities.
    He has been the Representative Director and Senior Managing Director of Kadokawa Digix since 2002, and the CEO of Kadokawa ASCII Research Institute since 2013, and will assume his current position in 2022.
    He is also the secretary-general of the ICT Startup League and an expert member of the Global Startup Campus Initiative of the Cabinet Office.
    Yosiaki Ishii
    METI Ministry of Economy,Trade and Industry Minister's Counselor
    Organization for Small & Medium Enterprises and Regional Innovation, JAPAN deputy director general
    Engaged in startup policy and SME policy at the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. He was in charge of establishing various policy programs such as Japan Startup Award, J-Startup, Startup Next Innovator, SBIR System Review, Startup Ecosystem Hub Cities, LLC/LLP Legislation, and others. He also participated in the formulation of the 5-year plan for startup development, and is currently strengthening the implementation of startup support in his current position from July 2023. He holds a B.A. in Commerce from Waseda University, and a Ph. D. (Commerce).
    Shigeo Kagami
    Professor, Graduate School of Engineering, The University of Tokyo
    Shigeo Kagami graduated from Hitotsubashi University, received an MBA from IMD, Switzerland, and a PhD in Business Administration from Case Western Reserve University. After working at Boston Consulting Group, he participated in the establishment of Corporate Directions (CDI) in 1986, and served as Director and Senior Executive Director. 2004 Professor at the University of Tokyo, Director of Commercialization Promotion Department, Industry-Academia Collaboration Division. He has been an auditor of the University of Tokyo Edge Capital (-Mar. 2013), Professor and Director of the Department of Innovation Promotion at the University of Tokyo since 2013, and has been in his current position since April 2020. In 2005, he opened the "University of Tokyo Entrepreneur Dojo". He is the Chairman of the Japan Venture Association and the Chairman of AIESEC Japan, a non-profit organization.
    Hitoshi Tanaka
    Representative Director and CEO, Jin's Holdings Co.
    General Incorporated Foundation Hitoshi Tanaka Foundation / Representative Director
    Representative Director and CEO of Jinz Holdings, Inc. Representative Director of Jin Tanaka Foundation Born in Gunma Prefecture in 1963, Tanaka founded J.I.N. Ltd. in 1988 (currently Jinz Holdings, Inc.) and launched the eyewear business "JINS" in 2001, and was listed on the First Section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange in 2013 (to be listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange Prime Market from April 2022). Tokyo Stock Exchange Prime Market from April 2022); established "Jin Tanaka Foundation" in 2014 to support regional revitalization in Gunma Prefecture, and started entrepreneur support projects "Gunma Innovation Award" and "Gunma Innovation School". He is currently involved in the revitalization of the Maebashi city center.
    Ayumi Fujimoto
    Executive Officer and CMO, Plug and Play Japan K.K.
    Representative Director, Startup Ecosystem Association of Japan, Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology / Ambassador for Entrepreneurship Education
    Expert Member of Startup Investment Working Group, Council for Regulatory Reform, Cabinet Office, Government of Japan
    Joined Career Design Center in 2002, moved to Google in April 2007, and served as General Manager of Human Resources Industry. After working as a partner in charge of the Women Will Project, she left the company and established a general incorporated association, at Will Work, in May 2016. In March 2022, she established the Startup Ecosystem Association of Japan and became its representative director. He is a certified instructor of Minerva in the United States. He is an ambassador for entrepreneurship education at the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, and an expert member of the Startup and Investment Working Group of the Cabinet Office's Council for Regulatory Reform.
    Naoto Hoshi
    Director, CFO, Unifa Corporation, President, Impact Startup Association, Inc.
    Financial Strategy Advisor, Tokyo Startup Strategy Fellow, Kokuyo Co.
    Mr. Hoshi joined the Investment Banking Division of Morgan Stanley Securities, a foreign investment bank, as a new graduate. He has led several large-scale domestic management integration deals and large-scale cross-border M&A deals worth over 1 trillion yen. He was also a member of the activist practice team, where he was in charge of shareholder relations matters, including activist relations. After working in the Tokyo and New York offices for about 12 years, he joined Unifa Corporation in 2019 as Director and CFO. He led the company's financial strategy and various strategic initiatives, including fundraising and ESG response of nearly 10 billion yen including equity and debt. Also serves as a financial strategy advisor for Kokuyo Corporation, President of the Impact Startup Association, member of the GSG Domestic Advisory Committee, and a Startup Strategy Fellow at Tokyo Metropolitan Government.
    Naohiro Mizumoto
    Partner, University of Tokyo Collaborative Platform Development Corporation (AOI #1 CIO)
    Mr. Mizumoto joined the University of Tokyo IPC in 2017, where he is in charge of investment in IT and service-related ventures and entrepreneurship support programs. After working at Daiwa SMBC Capital (now Daiwa Corporate Investment), he moved to Showa Shell Sekiyu K.K., where he was in charge of venture investments in high-tech fields such as IT and healthcare. As a task force leader, he led new service planning and market introduction, including settlement projects, new electric power projects, and digital transformation of stores, etc. From January 2017, he founded 1stRound while taking charge of venture investment operations again at IPC of the University of Tokyo. Later, he launched AOI Fund. Graduated from Kyoto Graduate School (Management of Technology) and passed the patent attorney examination (2004).
  • The applicant must be able to participate in the entire judging process and the award ceremony to be held on March 2, 2024.
  • The applicant must not be a company, organization, or individual whose activities are deemed unsuitable for support, such as those that are offensive to public order and morals. Inappropriate cases include the following
    Exclusion of Anti Social Forces 1. “Anti Social Forces” means:
    (1) an organized crime group, a member of an organized crime group, a related company or association of an organized crime group, and any other equivalent person of above; or
    (2) a person who themselves or through the use of third parties conducts a demand with violence, an unreasonable demand beyond its legal entitlement, use of intimidating words or actions, damages the credit or obstructs the business of the other party by spreading false rumors or by the use of fraudulent, or any other equivalent actions of above.
    2. Each party represents and warrants that is not a person who has fallen and shall not fall under any of the followings:
    (1) the Anti Social Forces;
    (2) a person having such relationship with the Anti Social Forces that shows the Anti Social Forces’ substantial involvement in the person’s management;
    (3) a person having such relationship with the Anti Social Forces that shows reliance on the Anti Social Forces;
    (4) a person who cooperate and is involved with the maintenance or operation of any Anti social Forces by providing funding to any Anti Social Forces or any similar act; or
    (5) a person who is engaged in a socially condemnable relationship with the Anti Social Forces.
  • If the AWARD recipient or TRYOUT winner is a minor, the consent of his/her parent or guardian must be obtained. The secretariat will assist the applicant in obtaining the consent of the guardian or custodian, if any coordination with them is necessary.
  • Application form entries and submitted materials must be complete.
  • Application and materials must be submitted by the application deadline.
  • Agreement to the policies regarding personal information, intellectual property rights, and portrait rights of publicity.
  • 注意事項
    Points to be Noted Concerning Selection, etc.
    (1) Uniqueness of Application and Project Content
    The plagiarism or infringement of third-party ideas or intellectual property is strictly prohibited during any period of time related to this project. From the application stage, please be aware of the need to exercise due caution regarding the plagiarism and infringement of third-party ideas and intellectual property.

    (2) Fraud
    The term “fraud” as used in this project refers to all activities that are in violation of general laws and regulations. For example, using goods provided for research and development for purposes other than those for which they were intended is considered fraudulent.

    (3) Obligation to cooperate in surveys after the support period ends
    In order to improve the future development of the program, there is a possibility that a survey will be conducted on the status of startups and businesses status of the awardees for approximately five years after the support period.
    We kindly request the awardees to cooperate with this survey.

    (4) Notes on Application Contents
    Please do not submit any information or content that you wish to keep confidential.
    Handling of
    Personal Information
  • Personal information registered with us will be used only for the purpose of communicating with you about this project, and to inform you of future events related to services provided by the Deloitte Tohmatsu Group, and will not be used for any other purpose.
  • Your name and photo may appear on the event’s website and related promotional materials for publicity purposes. Thank you for understanding.
  • Such information and content will be handled in accordance with the Deloitte Tohmatsu Group’s privacy policy and will not be provided to any third party without the consent of the individual concerned.
  • Please refer to the Deloitte Tohmatsu Group’s privacy policy at

  • Intellectual Property Rights and Copyrights
  • Intellectual property rights and copyrights related to the application belong to the applicant, but the applicant shall agree that the title of the application proposal and the name and outline of the project, as well as the name and affiliation of the applicant, may be made public on the official website or other media at the time of the announcement of nominations.
  • When submitting a proposal, it is the responsibility of the applicant to confirm in advance the rights and other related matters and to carry out protective procedures. (The organizer and secretariat will not be held responsible for any problems related to rights.)
  • If there is any suspicion of infringement of the intellectual property rights of others, or if such infringement is discovered, the award may be revoked.

  • Rights of Publicity
  • All photographs, videos, and recordings taken during the event scheduled for March 2, 2024, to announce the winners and present awards belong to the organizers. These materials may be published on Internet sites, newspapers, magazines, and TV programs. Participants are deemed to have agreed to the filming and publication of their photographs and videos before participating in the event.

  • Cancellation of Participation and Awards
  • If, during participation (application) in the Competition or after receiving an award, the Organizer discovers facts that make the Participant unsuitable for participation or award winner in the UPDATE EARTH, NIPPON INNOVATION AWARD, or NIPPON INNOVATION TRYOUT, the Organizer reserves the right to cancel the participation or revoke the award.
  • FAQ

    A. UPDATE EARTH offers entrepreneurship training courses for individuals across various age groups, including children, students (elementary, junior high, high school and university), and working adults throughout Japan. It aims to expand the foundation for entrepreneurship and collaborates with various innovation awards and business contests to gather diverse business ideas nationwide. Additionally, We provide a comprehensive support services, from identifying potential entrepreneurs to nurturing and supporting them.

    A. We offer entrepreneurship courses to over 100 high schools and universities.

    A. NIPPON INNOVATION AWARD focuses on revolutionary ideas for the earth, whereas NIPPON INNOVATION TRYOUT includes the submission of a business plan.

    A. No, There is no requirement for a specific business domain as long as it is a viable business idea. We welcome ideas and business plans in all genres, including space, agriculture/fishing, education, sports, medicine, food, tourism, environment, security, ICT, web3, metaverse/XR, regional revitalization, and more.

    A. Participation is free of charge.

    A. During the review process, you may be asked to revise your application or provide additional information, schedule an interview, or respond to an interview survey. If you are selected, for an award, your participation in the award ceremony will be requested.

    A. Yes, please fill out the form for both NIPPON INNOVATION AWARD and NIPPON INNOVATION TRYOUT.

    A. Yes, it is possible. Please fill out the supporter nomination form.

    A. Yes.

    A. If you need to revise your submission, or add or replace materials, please submit the correct information. Additionally, submit the contact form with the following details:
     ・Number to be invalidated
     ・Number to be validated
     ・Application title
     ・Your name
     ・Telephone number

    A. If you have any questions about cancellation, please contact us using the inquiry form with the following information.
     ・Reception number and proposal title to be cancelled
     ・Your name
     ・Telephone number

    A. Please submit separate forms for each idea.

    A. Yes, if you plan to start a business and can submit a business plan.

    A. Please contact us using the Contact form.
    UPDATE EARTH Foundation UPDATE EARTH Competition Secretariat