Congratulations to All British Business Awards 2023 Winners!

Written by BCCJ
November 3, 2023


Written by BCCJ
November 3, 2023

Photo credit: Life.14 inc

The 16th annual British Business Awards
“Challenge the ordinary, achieve the extraordinary”
celebrates the very best of UK-Japan business relations,
organised by the British Chamber of Commerce in Japan.

The best of UK-Japan relations, as well as British excellence, innovation, diversity, entrepreneurship and responsible business contributions in Japan were recognised last night at the British Business Awards 2023 (BBA2023), welcoming over 330 guests to the Hilton Tokyo.

Organised by the British Chamber of Commerce in Japan (BCCJ), with award winners chosen by a panel of six independent judges from the worlds of business, art, tech, and government, the BBA is considered a unique yearly showcase for British and Japanese creativity, culture and commerce.

Driven by the theme of “Challenge the ordinary, achieve the extraordinary”, this year’s BBA highlighted some of the most impressive and innovative contributions made by UK-Japan-related organisations and individuals over the past twelve months.



Company of the Year:

EY Japan

“EY Japan focuses on enhancing long term value for society, based on the strong connections between the EY purpose and the passion of each person at EY. They are growing their investment in human capital in tandem with working on co-creation within the organisation and external partners to provide valuable solutions to Build a Better Working World.”


UK-Japan Partnership:

Aioi Nissay Dowa Insurance & Mind Foundry

“In November 2022, Aioi Nissay Dowa Insurance through its European subsidiary Aioi Nissay Dowa Europe, Mind Foundry, and various professors of University of Oxford launched the AIOI R&D LAB in Oxford. This collaborative endeavor has successfully developed numerous advanced AI models, working towards providing innovative solutions to pressing global social issues.”
Read more on this partnership HERE


Entrepreneur of the Year:

Push Japan KK (Mike Sunda)

“Push Japan was established as a film-focused creative studio on the cusp of a global pandemic. They survived and have since grown to 10 full-time staff in 2023, won and retained contracts with Nike, Dickies and PlayStation, and even produced music videos for global megastars like Rosalia, and British favourites Arlo Parks and Jacob Collier.”


Digital & Technology Innovation:

“Colt has made remarkable strides in technological innovation in Japan, helping businesses adjust to the future of work and respond successfully to market dynamics. Their SDN-enabled network in Japan has earned acclaim from enterprises and Japanese network service providers for its remarkable agility. This embodies innovation and commitment to excellence, making it a standout choice for enterprises in Japan”.


Responsible Business:

AstraZeneca K.K. 

“Our future depends on the health of people, society and the planet. With this belief, AstraZeneca Japan (AZKK) has been leading the way in and beyond the industry in achieving zero carbon emissions, while making unprecedented progress by pioneering the use of clean energy, the adoption of EVs, reduction of paper usage and promoting digitalization.”


Diversity Equity and Inclusion:

Guardian Inc.

“Guardian Inc. is addressing important issues, such as child abuse and bullying, ensuring children’s needs are prioritised. Through the SOS communication support system, kimino micata, children can communicate with people they trust. Through creating an environment where children feel safe, Guardian aims for children to comfortably raise their voices.”

Photo credit: Life.14 inc


Sincere thanks to our BBA 2023 sponsors, without whom the BCCJ’s sixteenth black-tie event would not have been possible:

Headline sponsor: ESR Group
Gold sponsor: Invest Northern Ireland
Bronze sponsors: Argentum Wealth Management, Standard Chartered Bank
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion sponsor: Robert Walters Japan
In-Kind sponsors: Louis Pommery, Berry Bros and Rudd, Bushmills, Silent Pool Gin, Swan & Lion, Ukishima Sculpture Studio, Whisk-e Ltd., Wimbledon Brewery
Media sponsors: GoConnect, Guy Perryman, Life.14, Tokyo Weekender, Vega



The BBA2023 gala was supported by an impressive range of BCCJ member companies and friends, with ESR Group contributing as headline sponsor.

The BCCJ was delighted to welcome over 330 guests to the Awards. Guided by masters of ceremonies Guy Perryman MBE and Madoka Kato, guests came together to celebrate the 16th anniversary of the British Business Awards at the Hilton Tokyo. The event featured appearances from HM Ambassador to Japan, Julia Longbottom CMG, BCCJ President Richard Lyle, and many other BCCJ leaders and long-term supporters.

The event featured a wide range of creative touches which have become synonymous with the annual gala.

A champagne reception was enjoyed alongside crowd-favourite drinks provided by members of the BCCJ Bar: Louis Pommery, Berry Bros & Rudd, Bushmills, Silent Pool (Whisk-e), and Wimbledon Brewery.

Before digging into the mouth-watering five-course dinner, guests were invited to enjoy a one of a kind performance by World Dance Championship winners WHITE OUT TOKYO, accompanied by a backing video created by Nihon 3D Design.

Joining BCCJ President on stage was HM Ambassador to Japan and representatives from this year’s key sponsors ESR, Invest Northern Ireland and British Airways; all dressed in BBA2023 happi shawls for a memorable – and the BCCJ’s first ever – kagami biraki sake barrel-breaking ceremonial kanpai.

Following the Great British-inspired dinner where items were supplied from regions in Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England, guests were shown a special visual poem, written and narrated by Rachel Ferguson for the event, commemorating the special relationship between the UK and Japan.



Long-term BCCJ member, Kate Thomson of Ukishima Sculpture Studio created the seven coveted BBA2023 trophies reflecting this year’s BBA theme, “challenge the ordinary, achieve the extraordinary“.

On the night, the winner of each category was announced in a ceremony presided over by BCCJ Executive Director Sarah Backley, with HM Ambassador to Japan Julia Longbottom CMG revealing the winning company names one by one.

Competition was stiff this year, with 45 nominations received across six award categories:

  • Company of the Year
  • Entrepreneur of the Year
  • UK-Japan Partnership
  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
  • Responsible Business
  • Digital & Tech Innovation



A luxury raffle draw was led by BCCJ Executive Director Sarah Backley and Ben Fox, comedian, entrepreneur and creator of Tokyo Stand Up GK, with 30% of proceeds going to the C.W.Nicol Afan Woodland Trust in support of reviving satoyama in Nagano and bringing back to life the natural forestry ecosystem. The delivery of the BBA2023 would not have been possible without the generous support of our hospitality and beverage prize sponsors below, and Sarah extended a huge thanks to each of this year’s sponsors for their contribution to the event.

The final prize of the night was two Club World business class tickets from Tokyo to London, courtesy of British Airways, which was won through a lively game of Heads or Tails until the crowd was whittled down to one.

Guests ended the night in the ballroom with a range of British classics played by Risa Beddie & Band. The gala was followed by a nijikai (afterparty) at Hilton Tokyo’s Zatta Bar, where guests enjoyed specially-crafted drinks and live music for the rest of the evening.



An introduction to the outstanding achievements of this year’s 45 nominees is detailed in BBA 2023 programme below.



This year’s six esteemed judges were:

Hiroyo Hiramatsu | Director, Numbering Plan Office, Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications
Kazuki Yamada |
Conductor, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra
Greg Clark |
UK Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Japan
Moriaki (Mori) Kida |
Chairperson and CEO, EY Japan
Mitsuru Claire Chino |
Managing Executive Officer General Manager, Corporate Communications Division, Itochu Corporation
Lubna Shuja |
Immediate Past President of the Law Society of England and Wales & Nick Emmerson | President of the Law Society of England and Wales


A sincere thank you to all teams and individuals who contributed to the successful delivery of the British Business Awards 2023.

We look forward to seeing you next year!


About the BCCJ

The BCCJ is a not-for-profit private membership organisation of 200+ member companies, whose mission is to strengthen business ties between the UK and Japan.

Media enquiries to: [email protected]


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