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Interview with Mr Yamaguchi, GM of New Business Development Office at AdFlex

Its been 7 months since I was appointed to AdFlex Tech Fellowship.

It is my first-time to develop new businesses and services for other company in alliance with global tech firms which have not entered into Japans market, to review the path we took with AdFlex, I did conduct this interview with Mr. Yamaguchi, General Manager of New Business Development at AdFlex.

Q. Can you tell us about your career history and current role?
Mr. Yamaguchi : My career started with video media,
I was a part of Yahoo! Video project at CCI in 2006, and then established AdFlex with Mr Adachi, Former CEO of AdFlex in 2008.Since then I had been working as an account manager for beauty/supplement brands and others.

Currently, Im just a handy man. (laugh) In addition to the client management, I do everything necessary to develop new businesses by catching up with a new digital marketing trend.

Mark : What do you think about the job changes? Are you considering this as a great opportunity? Or did you just want to stick to the account management job, as you are managing a top-tier client?

Mr. Yamaguchi : Im not really rooted at sales at all. Till today, I usually support new accounts, and pass those accounts to my successor once they get on their business-growth curve.  The services Im dealing with are now global AI tech,” so its the same as before in a sense that this is also to build something new.

Q. What is your challenge for your current role?
Mr. Yamaguchi : In new businesses, information is an important resource. However, it is not easy to collect necessary information due to my biases.

Q. Tell me your honest opinion about the pros and cons of working with SOPHOLA in implementing/scaling global cutting-edge marketing and adtech.
Mr. Yamaguchi : The alliance partnership with SOPHOLA enabled us to catch up with the rapidly changing global adtech market and make a right decision. Thats a huge value for us.

Mark : What did you realize by getting more info about the global tech markets?

Mr. Yamaguchi : Two things.

Firstly, the global AI tech is very advanced. We had been working with Japanese tech partners, so I strongly felt the differences.

Secondly, it is a totally different way of doing businesses. Thanks to SOPHOLA, we learned how to build partnerships with global tech partners. To be a bit more precise, since none of our solutions had any footprint in Japan and there was no detailed information about the products, SOPHOLA guided us to pull out the necessary details of the info and make things forward.

Q. What is your new business development plan or need?
Mr. Yamaguchi : Personally speaking,  Adflex should be able to provide an integrated digital marketing service such as AI-driven operation optimization as well as the know-how.

Q. At last, please send some message to our readers (advertisers, ad agencies, and tech firms).
Mr. Yamaguchi : In the future, the ability to adapt changes will become more important. We already see drastic changes from what it was a few years ago in this industry, and the velocity of the changes will continue to be accelerated.

Mark : I agree that it has been a very drastic change for your company for last 7 months since our partnership began. 12 new global tech solutions and English? Thats a tremendous change. Do you see any green light in this process?

Mr. Yamaguchi : Yes! We see some bright green light! Still, it is up to AdFlex if we can move faster in this direction. We are now aligned to make this drastic change as a company, so this is a very critical time for us.

Thank you so much for the interview, Mr. Yamaguchi!

Masaki Mark Iino
Founder & CEO