Japanese startup turns oversized greeting cards into an unlikely digital business



In Japan, when someone leaves a company, or if there’s a special occasion like a new baby or someone’s birthday, very often people will add personal notes on a big card to convey best wishes. In Japanese this is called yosegaki which means “to gather” and “write”.

But the problem is that you can only gather messages from people you’re physically with, so if you need to collect messages from people who are not in the same place, it can be difficult, if not impossible. But a relatively new company called Yosetti has created a digital yosegaki card service.

You can now go to Yosetti’s mobile-optimized website, and sign up using Facebook, Twitter, or email. Cards are available for many occasions including birthdays, farewells, marriages, new babies, and more. Each category comes with corresponding design templates, and once you’ve selected one, the service provides you with a unique URL which you can then share with friends so they can contribute messages.

The resulting card can be sent for free as a link that can be browsed on the web. There are also options to download the card as a PDF for 300 yen (about $3), or print it on a fancy piece of cardboard for 2800 yen (about $30).

Check out the the promotional video below to learn more about how the site works.