LANSING – A-Lex International Marketing, a Schaumburg, Ill. based agency, has been selected to assist with Japanese attraction efforts in Michigan with the goal of creating new jobs and private investment in the state.
“In the ever-intense competition to attract foreign based companies to Michigan, it is of utmost importance to strengthen our ties with key partners,” said MEDC CEO Jeff Mason. “We are greatly appreciative of our relationships with the government and businesses in Japan, and A-Lex International will help us move forward and strengthen those relationships.”
Since A-Lex International Marketing was established in 2007, the firm has been providing new business development services to more than 110 small-to-medium sized Japanese companies. Services include market research, website creation, and trade show support as well as assistance with opening new manufacturing facilities in the U.S. These companies had no revenue in the U.S. at the time, but by 2017 their revenues increased by $40 million. A-Lex focuses on providing individualized service to each company after identifying their target customers.
“Our company has locations in Japan and the U.S., and we have helped more than 40 Japanese companies establish a presence in the U.S. market,” said A-Lex International Business Development Consultant Alex Kaneko. “I am looking forward to working with MEDC as a Japanese independent contractor to help Japanese companies succeed in Michigan as well.”
As the international contractor for Japan, A-Lex International will work proactively with companies in Japan and identify leads in MEDC’s target industry sectors: Automotive/connected vehicles; agriculture; aerospace; IT/software and data centers; and life sciences. The contractor will also play a lead role in organizing and planning state of Michigan investment missions to Japan. In addition, A-Lex will be responsible for building relationships with key MEDC stakeholders such as the Detroit Regional Chamber, Oakland County, and others, and will support Midwest-U.S. – Japan Association activities in Japan and the U.S.
From Jan. 2011 to today, there have been 59 investments from Japan-based companies into Michigan. Those projects have generated a total of $1.6 billion in capital investment and created 4,700 jobs for Michigan residents.
“A-Lex International has a proven track record of successfully bringing Japanese companies to U.S. markets, and we look forward to working with them as we increase our efforts to generate more interest by Japanese companies to consider expanding in Michigan,” said MEDC Senior Vice President of National and Global Business Development Tino Breithaupt.
The MEDC worked in partnership with the following groups to establish the Japanese contractor position: Consulate General of Japan in Detroit; Toyota Motor North America Research & Development; Japan Business Society of Detroit; Japan Auto Parts Industries Association, Japan External Trade Organization- Chicago, Japan America Society of Michigan and Southwestern Ontario, and Battle Creek Unlimited.