Exclusive: Interview with Minato City
SeiRogai x 港区にインタビュー掲載


As COO and Co-Founder of SeiRogai, Inc., I’m thrilled to share that Minato City Hall and the Minato City Industrial Promotion Center gave us an exclusive interview that delves into the core of our company’s mission. At SeiRogai, our passion lies in serving as a bridge between Japan and the rest of the world, opening doors for companies to expand overseas and showcase this remarkable country.


Interview Link (Japanese Only): https://minato-sansin.com/entrepreneur/seirogai/

In this interview, we had the honor of discussing our vision, services, and the incredible journey that has brought us to where we are today. As foreigners living in Japan, we bring a unique perspective to the table, allowing us to shine a light on the hidden treasures, cultural richness, and historical wonders that often go unnoticed.


SeiRogai is more than just a media production company – we are a media tech startup that combines media production, marketing, advertising, branding, business consulting, and the latest digital technologies. We take pride in our ability to provide world-class support to our clients, fueled by our consolidated network of connections and cross-cultural business perspectives.


One aspect that truly sets us apart is our collaboration with the Government of Japan’s SME Agency as a certified “JAPAN Brand” partner company. Together, we promote and develop small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Japan and overseas. Our goal is to bring the captivating essence of Japan to the global stage through high-quality media production and meaningful human connections.


Two of our recent endeavors delves into innovating upon our expertise in filmmaking with the latest digital media equipment and technology. The Covid-19 pandemic has transformed the way we travel, making it difficult to cross borders and explore new horizons. However, where there are challenges, there are also opportunities for innovation. That’s why we developed our services, “SeiRogaiTV”, a new streaming platform that focuses on bringing more content from SouthEast Asia to the world, and “Global Virtual Travel,” a platform that offers VR360 virtual tours accessible to both domestic and international audiences.

新しい事業の2つは、最新のデジタルメディア機器と技術を駆使して、映画制作の専門知識を革新することに取り組んでいます。コロナ禍の影響により、私たちの旅行のあり方を変え、国境を越えて新たな地平を探求することが困難になりました。ただし、困難があるならば、イノベーションの機会もあるのです。そのために私たちは「SeiRogaiTV」という新しいVOD配信サービスを生み出しました。これは、より多くのコンテンツを東南アジアから世界に提供することに焦点を当てています。また、「Global Virtual Travel (グローバルバーチャルトラベル)」というDX観光プラットフォームも開発しました。これは、国内外の観客が利用できるVR360バーチャルツアーを提供しています。

In this interview, we also explore the story behind our company’s name. You see, our CEO Samuel Yuen had a serendipitous encounter with “Seirogan,” a Japanese medicine renowned for its healing properties. Inspired by the medicine’s ability to captivate and heal, we chose the name SeiRogai, which represents our journey of recognizing and spreading the true charms of Japan.


Continue reading for the full interview and story!


SeiRogai Representatives Samuel Yuen and Rachel Leng

SeiRogai, Inc.:

“Bridging Japan to the World”

Point #1: One-stop shop service to promote the charms of Japan to the rest of the world.

SeiRogai Inc. is co-founded by CEO Samuel Yuen (pictured left), and myself, Rachel Leng, with the aim to serve as a bridge between Japan and the rest of the world, and the ultimate goal of showcasing the “true charms of Japan.”

The services we provide are comprised of the combination of the following areas (1) “Media Production” for overseas expansion, (2) “Marketing, Advertising and Branding” including every stage of marketing strategies such as planning, development, and assessment, (3) “Business Consulting” facilitating support for market research, overseas expansion strategies, overseas market development, and business establishment, and (4) “Online distribution services” for local tourism and companies in Japan and overseas through our platforms Global Virtual Travel and SeiRogaiTV. Our company’s distinctive feature is that we can effectively offer these services to our clients as a one-stop shop.

Point #2: The Japanese “norm” is a big attraction for foreigners.

Utilizing the advantages of media production, we strive to showcase the “charms of Japan” that are still rather unknown abroad and even on a domestic level because Japanese people might take them for granted. From our unique standpoint of foreigners living in Japan, we aim to spark interest in Japanese culture and places of interest from a historical and educational perspective, in order to serve as a bridge between Japan and the rest of the world.

This also relates to the story behind our company’s name. Due to his busy schedule in preparation for the establishment of the company, our CEO Samuel Yuen experienced stomach pain. After taking “Seirogan” offered to him at the pharmacy, he recovered immediately. Seirogan, a Japanese medicine revered by the Japanese people for its healing properties, is usually out of the radar for most foreigners living in Japan. We found the wonderful effect to be quite alluring, so we shared it with our friends abroad, where it went on to gain quick popularity.

There are many things that are part of common knowledge in Japan but are still unknown to foreigners. We decided on the company’s name with the spirit of recognizing the true charms of Japan while taking on the mission of spreading it more widely. The “Seiro” in SeiRogai is easy to remember, as it sounds similar to Seirogan. At the same time, it also sounds similar to “seiko”, meaning “success” in Japanese. This visual is also included in the representation of the company’s logo, where the “road to success” is intended to be portrayed. The circle in the logo represents the round Seirogan pill, while the film strip represents the path we are trying to pave within the media production industry in Japan as a ground-breaking company.

SeiRogai Logo

Point #3: We want to bring the “JAPAN Brand” overseas by way of high-quality media production and human connections.

As a certified “JAPAN Brand” partner company, we actively collaborate with the Government of Japan’s SME Agency in the promotion and business development of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by providing comprehensive support all across Japan and overseas by taking advantage of our unique distinction of serving as a “one-stop shop” for media production, marketing and advertising. All of this is supported by our established strong network of connections in Japan and overseas, a product of our cross-cultural business approach.

Our CEO Samuel Yuen, who was raised in Australia, is a seasoned international film producer with a career spanning for over 20 years. His extensive experience includes Hollywood productions, TV shows and commercials, documentaries, and many other media projects distributed across Thailand, Taiwan, Australia, Japan, and other countries. In addition to his rich experience in media production, he actively serves as General Secretary and Advisor to a former Senator and member of Thailand’s Royal Family.

On my part, I majored in East Asian Studies at Harvard University and have a network of business executives from all around the world. I am also a global speaker and public figure with a strong presence on social media.

With our exceptional synergy, we are able to provide world-class support by combining state-of-the-art quality media production with our consolidated network of connections and cross-cultural business perspectives.

SeiRogai Japan Brand Partner

Point #4: Japan and Japanese products are in demand around the world.

Japan was ranked first in the World Economic Forum (WEF) “2021 Travel and Tourism Development Index Report”, also known as the Davos Forum. This report ranks the competitiveness of the tourism industry by comparing tourism resources, transportation infrastructure, and safety of each country, among other indicators. This proves that Japan is by far the most popular destination for inbound tourism, especially from Southeast Asia and Australia, and that there is a growing number of foreigners who want to learn more about Japan and consume goods and services produced in Japan.

However, general media outlets often tend to focus solely on portraying Japan’s lush nature and delicious food. I saw there was a demand for content aiming to convey Japan’s rich history and culture throughout each region more deeply, showing interactions with local communities. We wanted to take on the challenge of creating such content complemented by story-telling of the culture, history and traditions of Japan’s hidden gems.

Point #5: Virtual tours using VR360 ° technology born from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, crossing borders and traveling freely was severely limited. In light of these events, new business models had to emerge. With our service “Global Virtual Travel,” we strive to provide an online distribution platform for local tourism and businesses for both domestic and international audiences. We are developing virtual tours using our unique VR360 ° shooting technology, supported by our interactive DX platform. The concept we are aiming for is “an immersive experience for the viewer.” The viewer will be able to choose a place of interest and access the footage as if being there, complemented by storytelling introducing the history and culture of the location, allowing them to interact with locals, and in this way promoting tourism in the area.

Global Virtual Travel

We have collaborated with Fuchu City as a pilot project in this exciting endeavor, producing a promotional video captivating its unique allure. As a former “Miss Singapore” titleholder, I am also featured as a guide. In addition, we have also been certified as “Minato City Promotion Crew,” one of the most acclaimed wards in Tokyo. We are cooperating to highlight the captivating essence of Minato Ward by producing an interactive VR360 virtual tour through Zojoji Temple, with the projection of further spreading its charm both in Japan and abroad.

The approach utilized in these videos involves incorporating a storyline while showcasing a specific destination, effectively merging the allure of the narrative with the captivating backdrop of the featured location. The ultimate goal is to forge innovative promotional videos that seamlessly integrate dynamic advertising strategies, creating a new and immersive experience for the viewer.

Fuchu City Virtual Tours Japan
Fuchu City Virtual Tours Japan

Point #6: An unprecedented entertainment platform.

In a post-pandemic landscape, another business venture we have taken on is SeiRogaiTV, an online distribution service that connects Southeast Asia and Japan. In the midst of the pandemic unfolding, we made attempts to collaborate with local TV stations, but due to travel restrictions, transmitting information proved to be a challenge. However, SeiRogaiTV has obtained authorization to distribute Thai programs and movies through our platform to Japan and the rest of the world, offering English and Japanese subtitles.

Our vision is to extend the showcase of the appealing and captivating facets of Japan to a larger audience. Furthermore, this platform could serve as a channel for promoting tourism and cultural soft power not only focused on Tokyo but also highlighting other regions of Japan, allowing many people, even those who cannot travel, to enjoy quality experiences transcending physical boundaries.


Point #7: The key to overseas expansion is market research from a local perspective.

We provide one-stop support for the overseas expansion of our partners through carefully planned marketing strategies and business consultation, but the question of “where to start?” is a challenge for many SMEs. As a solution, we offer branding and market research services.

For instance, if you are looking to expand your business overseas, you might have to make adjustments to the design, packaging, slogan and product description. To truly succeed, a strategic approach that goes beyond mere translation is required to fit the preferences of the target market. Without a deep understanding of the local culture and society, this objective becomes extremely complex. Through comprehensive market research, we assist entrepreneurs in uncovering valuable insights that will allow them to position their products in the desired way.

Without tailoring creative campaigns and marketing efforts to align with local lifestyle and culture, even substantial financial investments may fail to produce effective overseas reach and sales. When delving into the issue, we can see that insufficient market research is usually the root of the problems. It becomes evident that a “one-size-fits-all” approach is inadequate, especially when dealing with foreign markets. That is why we conduct our research at a local level with the aim of communicating effectively in order to reach the target market.

In a case of overseas expansion support into Thailand for a Japanese hotel brand, our CEO Samuel Yuen served as invaluable assistance by fostering a trusted relationship with the Thai Royal Family through his extensive work with the Thai National Tourism Organization. As a consultant, he succeeded in securing the best site for the establishment of the property by assessing the most convenient locations at a local level. As a result, a large hotel boasting more than 500 rooms is planned to be built.

Another crucial aspect to consider is aligning the products with effective promotional campaigns. We take advantage of our cross-cultural and multilingual expertise to excel at disseminating information to diverse audiences. Many local governments and Japanese companies find it difficult to monitor the impact of their marketing strategies, but with our comprehensive follow-up support, we make sure to keep track of visibility and engagement. In a recent experience, our international press release announcing the Zojoji Temple VR Tour project in English and Japanese was covered by over 600 media outlets, including some of the most influential global outlets, reaching an estimated of 29 million viewers in just one week. We believe that using our services as a one-stop shop results in a more cost-effective alternative than hiring different companies for the same purposes.

Point #8: A message to those who are thinking of expanding globally.

We hope to continue building bridges between Japan and the rest of the world, contributing to regional revitalization and the expansion of Japanese companies. Effective communication stands at the core of successful overseas expansion. With our expertise in multicultural understanding and multilingual support, we can guide any company in establishing a compelling target market and promoting its unique appeal from the ground up. We can help you expand your business to any part of the world, but especially Asia. We are your dedicated partner in maximizing your global impact and making your global expansion a resounding success.


About Rachel

Rachel Leng is COO and Co-Founder of SeiRogai, Inc., a Tokyo-based business consultancy & media production company. Previously, she was Leader of Business Development on the Investment Management team at a Japanese private equity fund, as well as Policy Analyst at a top think tank in Seoul, South Korea.

As an East Asia specialist and former Miss Singapore titleholder, Rachel is passionate about the potential of media to educate and raise awareness about history, culture, art, business, and societal issues to enhance mutual understanding.

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