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Katsuyo Kuwako
For Katsuyo Kuwako's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Mar 27, 2019
Miyakoshi, the first Japanese firm into postwar China, hopes for a real estate-driven comeback
When it comes to China, Kunimasa Miyakoshi has at least two claims to fame.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Dec 7, 2017
Japan's robots stepping up to fill worst labor shortage in 40 years
While people fret about robots taking human jobs, machines in Japan are stepping in to fill vacancies amid the worst labor shortage in more than 40 years. That is creating an opportunity for up-and-coming startups focused on automating warehouse tasks.
Japan Times
BUSINESS / Markets
Sep 6, 2017
Mom and pop investors tiptoe into Japan's lucrative REIT market
This summer, Japanese real estate investment trusts benefited from an unexpected group of net buyers for the first time in nearly seven years: Mom and pop investors.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Jun 7, 2017
With Ginza land prices above bubble-era highs, real estate analysts expect correction
Land prices in Tokyo's central Chuo Ward, home to the famous Ginza shopping district, have jumped by 51 percent in four years. In Osaka, they are up by nearly half.
Japan Times
JAPAN
May 30, 2017
Olympic stadium architect sees wood as way to change Tokyo's concrete legacy
Look around Tokyo and you can still see the concrete legacy left by the 1964 Olympics and the subsequent economic "miracle." Wood can change that, says the architect of the main stadium for the 2020 Games.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
May 11, 2017
In financial straits, shrines turn to luxury property development
Shinto elders at the centuries-old Unesco World Heritage Site of Shimogamo Shrine upset neighbors when they bulldozed a swath of old Kyoto forest to build an apartment complex with units selling for more than $2 million apiece.
Japan Times
BUSINESS / Companies
Feb 1, 2017
Housewife who saved Toyoko hotel chain puts focus on female managers
Maiko Kuroda isn't new to challenges. She was a housewife when her father's hotel chain was embroiled in scandal, forcing her to return to the business almost a decade ago. Having boosted profit tenfold, she's now eyeing markets in Europe and North America.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Jan 17, 2017
High school dropout builds bus empire in Japan after selling his car
Kimi Takura quit his fast-paced job as a deliveryman when he was 22 after he was hospitalized for a month with exhaustion. Out of work, he sold his much-loved Jaguar car, bought a secondhand bus and started a one-man business catering to Taiwanese tourists.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Aug 29, 2016
Marilyn Monroe's Tokyo honeymoon spot frets over impact of yen rise
Tokyo's Imperial Hotel, the luxury inn that counts Marilyn Monroe among past guests, raised room rates last year to levels it last charged before the bubble economy imploded in the early 1990s. A surging yen now threatens those gains.
Japan Times
JAPAN
Aug 28, 2016
A ski resort success, Niseko defies rural Japan's demographic decline
Japan's shrinking population has weighed on the world's third-biggest economy, alarmed government forecasters and turned some rural communities into veritable ghost towns.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Jul 28, 2016
Real estate firm plans Airbnb rentals amid tourism boom
Star Mica Co., a Tokyo-listed real-estate company founded by an ex-Goldman Sachs Group Inc. banker, plans to double returns from apartments, using Airbnb to house foreign tourists.
Japan Times
JAPAN
Jul 15, 2016
60 seen as too young to retire in aging, worker-short Japan
Hiroshi Suzuki had a fulfilling career in which he traveled the world as an engineer. Then, at age 65, he retired. That didn't last long. For the past seven years Suzuki, 72, has been a nursing aide in the Tokyo area, and says he's years away from true retirement.
Japan Times
BUSINESS / Companies
Jul 14, 2016
Hotel tycoon Horiguchi finds making people happy brings reward
The Buddhist approach to doing business is yielding results in Japan again.
Japan Times
JAPAN
Apr 29, 2016
In quake-prone Japan, Kumamoto temblors stir worry of 'Tokyo X Day'
There's nothing comical about this manga: office building windows shatter, trains derail and cars plunge from buckling bridges. It all happens at 4:35 p.m. on a day dubbed "Tokyo's X Day."
Japan Times
BUSINESS / Economy
Jan 25, 2016
BOJ-fueled Tokyo property boom pricing average earners out of housing market
Rich buyers taking advantage of record low borrowing costs have pushed prices in Tokyo beyond the reach of many ordinary buyers, taking the wind out of property sales.
BUSINESS
Sep 29, 2015
Japan's cheap debt, aging population prompt ex-banker to shift focus
Saburo Nishiura is using Japan's record-low borrowing costs to turn the nation's shrinking population to his advantage.
Japan Times
BUSINESS / Companies
Aug 18, 2015
Tokyo building boom causes debt fatigue as Sumitomo yields rise
Sumitomo Realty & Development Co. is forecasting a third-straight year of record operating income as "Abenomics," the name give to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's economic policies, spurs a property market boom. That doesn't mean investors have unlimited appetite for its debt.
BUSINESS
Aug 10, 2015
Good times over for Japan teachers fund, now seeking to avoid losses
Japan's investment fund for teachers has switched its focus to avoiding losses, predicting the best days are over for both stocks and bonds.
Japan Times
BUSINESS
Jul 3, 2015
Salarymen sidelined as Chinese descend on Japan property market
The trend has already hit Sydney, Vancouver and the U.S. Now it's happening in Japan: busloads of real estate buyers from China are coming in, buying up homes and pushing prices higher.
JAPAN
May 3, 2015
Mori Trust heir shows how women can shine
The daughter of real estate magnate Akira Mori fits the mold for the government's female empowerment campaign and is preparing to take over.

Longform

Hideo Shimoju points to a possible site that his fellow neighbors may relocate to. Such relocations have happened before, but not preemptively.
In disaster-prone Japan, some communities consider major moves