This year marked the fifth anniversary of the collapse of English language school giant Nova, which filed for bankruptcy protection on Oct. 26, 2007.

Under the guidance of Nagoya-based G.Communication, the cram school and restaurant operator that initially bailed out the company, Nova was able to do what many viewed as the impossible and restructure (see "Four years after 'Nova shock,' eikaiwa is down but not out," Zeit Gist, Dec. 20, 2011).

Defying the odds and a sluggish economy, Nova is still operating, though now under the control of Tokyo-based Jibun Mirai Associe Co. Ltd., and is openly celebrating the feat.