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08.22.2019 | Category, Blog

Last September this blog highlighted YAMATO joining Plug and Play, a Silicon Valley-based accelerator focused on optimizing some of the world’s most foremost companies. One area of focus or “themed innovation platforms” is supply chain logistics, where Plug and Play links leaders like YAMATO with innovative startups. Their mission is simple: To make innovation open to anyone, anywhere.

So promising are the technologies at Plug and Play that YAMATO has recently installed Kei Matsumoto on-site as their Innovations Manager. Instead of visiting the tech center every month or so, Kei now works as an “implant” liaison, remaining on-site to help develop next generation technologies to improve YAMATO operations system-wide.

After experience in IT industry in Japan and Australia, Kei is working with Plug and Play and a myriad of digital startups, incubating ground-breaking solutions to “pain points” common in shipping logistics. According to Kei, the challenges are formidable. One is to establish visibility solutions. There are also challenges with the accuracy and reliability of visibility, making sure shipping vessels and air cargo carriers arrive on track. As the industry continues to grow, logistic infrastructure must keep pace. Maybe the biggest concern in today’s global shipping industry is security, how goods pass safely from one country to another. Not to mention fuel costs, worker retention, environmental issues and inventory management. Kei summed it up best, “YAMATO is about operating as efficiently as possible.”

For continuing information on this initiative, go to