GTIE GAP Fund 2024 Overseas Market Development Practice Course Now Open for Subscriptions

Purpose and Intent:
Under the GAP Fund Program, the Greater Tokyo Innovation Ecosystem (GTIE), which was commissioned by the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) to conduct the Startup Ecosystem Co-Creation Program as one of the programs under the New Industry Creation Fund for University Startups (NIFS), will provide support to researchers affiliated with universities participating in the GTIE platform. GTIE (Greater Tokyo Innovation Ecosystem), which was commissioned by the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) to conduct a startup ecosystem co-creation program as one of the programs under the New Industry Creation Fund for University-Based Innovation, provides support to researchers belonging to universities participating in the GTIE platform.

As part of the “GTIE GAP Fund Program 2024,” the “Practical Course for Overseas Market Development (hereinafter referred to as the “Course”)” has been established. The GTIE GAP Fund Program 2024″ has established the “Practical Course for Overseas Market Development (hereinafter referred to as the “Course”)” as one of its programs. This course will provide support for research and development proposals for overseas expansion, with the aim of creating university start-ups that aim to expand into global markets based on the innovative technological seeds of universities participating in the GTIE platform.

Adopted projects will be implemented jointly by the principal investigators responsible for the research and development and the commercialization promotion organization (VC, etc.) responsible for the business development of the technology seeds, and will have the potential for significant business growth, including international expansion, under the project management of the commercialization promotion organization. The project will promote initiatives aimed at creating deep tech startups with the potential for significant business growth, including international expansion, under the project management of the commercialization promotion organization. Milestones (interim milestones and business and R&D milestones) will be set for the promotion of the project, and business development and R&D will be conducted in an integrated manner in order to achieve these milestones.

Unlike the regular GAP Fund program, this course will first contact the assumed overseas markets (customers and partners) and set R&D targets to meet their requirements as milestones above. This is a backcast-type program in which R&D to realize these goals is conducted. Therefore, it is a prerequisite that the company possesses the data, prototypes, and intellectual property necessary to elicit the requirements. The team will be supported by an overseas mentor who will be familiar with the business and technology involved and will connect the team to potential customers, partners, and experts in the business, so the program is intended for those who are serious about overseas business development.

Overview of this course:
[ Objectives ].

To develop a business that can be accepted overseas,
To contact potential overseas partners and clarify the specifications required for collaboration.
To implement R&D to realize the specifications and develop the required data and prototypes.
Based on the overseas market development strategy, create clues for overseas business development by negotiating partnerships with partners utilizing the above R&D results.

[ Main Activities ].
This course will be conducted in collaboration with UCSD (University of California San Diego) in the United States. The screening sessions will be conducted in English by U.S. judges.
First semester of the academic year:
Set R&D goals and develop an activity plan:
With the cooperation of the commercialization promoter (overseas mentor), contact with potential partners to identify requirements for collaboration (necessary data, prototypes) and formulate an activity plan. At this time, milestones will be reviewed.
From June to October:
Based on the requirements from the above partners and the status of data and prototypes that can be realized in the future, formulate a partnering strategy for market development with the overseas mentors.
Conduct R&D activities for data collection and completion of prototypes required for collaboration with partners.
Select teams to move on to the second half of the fiscal year based on the status of achievement of set milestones.

Second half of the fiscal year:
October – January:
New R&D targets are re-set and R&D activities are conducted toward these targets.
Visit prospective partners, present data and prototypes obtained through the above R&D, and negotiate with them to establish business partnerships.

Application Overview:
1. Application Eligibility

1) Faculty members and researchers affiliated with the following universities on the GTIE platform
The University of Tokyo, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Waseda University, University of Tsukuba, Chiba University, Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, Yokohama City University, Kanagawa University of Health and Welfare, Tokyo Medical and Dental University, Keio University, Tokyo Metropolitan University, Tokyo University of Science, Shibaura Institute of Technology, University of Electro-Communications, Ibaraki University, Tokai University
(2) In the above, the team must be a team of researchers from a pre-startup university that meets the following criteria
Deep-tech teams in the fields of biotechnology, medicine, healthcare, agriculture, materials, etc.
The team must have a prototype or data showing the performance of the product at present.
Have English language skills and aim to expand their business overseas (U.S.).
Have applied for patents related to technology and business
The team has already applied for patents related to the technology and the business.
*For this course, the overseas mentor found through the UCSD network will be recognized as the commercialization promotion organization.
*If the principal investigator is a student (master’s or doctoral course), he/she is not eligible to apply.
*Even teams that have already started their own businesses may apply if their R&D proposal is based on different seeds.

2. application period and selection schedule
[Application Deadline ] Noon, Wednesday, February 14, 2024
[ Schedule ].

Overseas Market Development Practice
Deadline for 1st round of application submission Noon, Wednesday, February 7, 2024
Final application submission deadline Noon, Wednesday, February 14, 2024
Interview Screening Saturday morning, February 17, 2024 (February 16, afternoon U.S. time)
Notification of interview results Week of Monday, February 19, 2024
Approval by JST Approximately 1 to 1.5 months after submission of project proposal to JST
Project start Around April to May 2024

Please include the name of the organization and the name of the person in charge of the project in the application form for the first round submission, which will be required to be included in the final documents.
If the requirements are not met at the primary submission stage, the Principal Investigator will be notified the day after submission.
∙ In the final submission, we will ask you to submit other application documents and further check the requirements. The results will be notified to the Principal Investigator before the interview screening.

3. Expected number of applications
Up to 4 cases

4. research and development expenses
The maximum adopted unit cost is 28 million yen (maximum 12 million yen for the first half of the fiscal year and 16 million yen for the second half of the fiscal year).
The amount will be determined based on the number of adopted projects, and the selection of projects for the second half of the fiscal year will be made based on the milestone evaluation in the middle of the fiscal year.

Application Documents
( 1) Application Guidelines

( 2) First round submission materials
Prepare a presentation of your project according to the template file below and submit it for the first round of submissions.

( 3) Final Submission
Form 1: Application for R&D Proposals for the Practical Overseas Market Development Course

Form 2: Proposal Budget Proposal for Practical Overseas Market Development Course

Form 4: Outline of Commercialization Promotion Organization and Commercialization Promoter

How to submit application documents:
Please fill out the following application form and upload the documents downloaded and prepared in “5.

First round submission: Application form
Final submission: Application form

Application Restrictions
JST has established restrictions on duplicate applications for the same Principal Investigator for JST projects. Please refer to the application guideline for details.

For inquiries, please contact:
GTIE Office, University of Tokyo E-mail :