GTN's goal for improving the living conditions of non-Japanese residents
The interview of Mr Goto the CEO of Global Trust Networks Co.,Ltd
The living conditions of non-Japanese residents have been improved over the past few years thanks to guarantor companies like Global Trust Networks Co., Ltd (GTN). This company has been dealing with issues coming from the guarantor system for nine years. With its tireless effort and perseverance, GTN is now one of the leading guarantor companies providing lease guarantor services to non-Japanese citizens. Although this industry does not look so glamorous, it has made a remarkable contribution to the spread of globalization in Japan. We interviewed Mr. Goto, founder and CEO of GTN, to learn about its unique staffing and mobile services.
Q - What makes GTN's staffing and mobile services different from other existing services?
A - We didn't start staffing and mobile services in pursuit of profits. We had a profound desire to improve the living conditions of international students and those who are new to Japan. There are many companies that offer recruitment services to foreign workers who have language skills and expertise, but those with language barriers are the ones who really need our assistance. Most international students come to Japan with high hopes, but soon hit a wall as job hunting without Japanese fluency is quite difficult. They need a job to support themselves because, without income, they cannot pay tuition and rent.
We believe that we can be their safety net. We can afford to expand into new markets now that our lease guarantor business is up and running. We do not provide dodgy services at affordable prices. We communicate with the students on a regular basis and try to understand any concerns they might have so that we can find solutions for them. We are growing by word of mouth.
As for mobile services, we dropped the traditional two-year contract because many people stay in Japan for less than two years. The current contract system also demands a penalty fee for those who stay over two years upon their departure. There is almost no company that provides language services to make a contract. We offer an unlimited data plan for less than 3,000 yen, and this news is spread by word of mouth at universities and Japanese schools. Our knowledge and experiences from the lease guarantee business made it possible to lower the price for non-Japanese citizens.
Q - You've identified the needs of non-Japanese residents and turned it into a new business. What's next?
A - The Cabinet is aiming to increase the number of international students to 300,000 by 2020, but the target may not be achieved with the current situation. We should offer something which western countries don't have in order to win the international students from those popular study abroad destinations. We will satisfy their basic needs by providing lease guarantee services, affordable mobile services, and recruitment services.
We will try our best to accommodate their needs by providing high-quality services at affordable prices and help improve the living conditions of non-Japanese residents.
People see western countries as a place where the American dream can come true, like Silicon Valley which has produced many successful, new billionaires. However, this idea doesn't really apply to Japan where most people see themselves as being middle class. Unlike western countries where very few people can climb the ladder of success, Japan makes it possible for anyone who can integrate with society, master keigo, and understand the way Japanese think to find a job. It shouldn't be that difficult to live a comfortable life once receiving a job offer. The Japanese dream is attainable for a wide range of non-Japanese people. That's why the idea is so attractive.
Mr. Goto has been leading the company since its foundation. It began when Mr. Goto was just a student, but the company has grown to become an organization where employees can work harmoniously as a team while simultaneously nurturing their individuality. Nearly 70% of the company's 50 employees are from overseas and the management team consists of a mix of both genders with multiple nationalities. University researchers often visit the company for their diversity management studies. This small, international company will definitely be one leading the way to the globalization of Japan.
Mr Goto PROFILE
2002 Started a business while studying in Faculty of Law in Chuo University, and established online game and fashion website.
2003 Founded Mue gate, LLC. and became Representative Director. Retired in 2004.
2004 Founded Mue, Inc. and became Representative Director.Retired in 2006.
2006 Founded Global Trust Networks Co.,Ltd. and became Representative Director(to present).
GTN official site http://www.gtn.co.jp/en/[*1]