Hello, I’m Takeshi Hirano a.k.a. Kigoyama, the co-founder of SD.

SD Japan rebranded to The Bridge on October 7th, 2013, and we plan to introduce additional features for you in the near future. Let me share a little about our future plans.

The story so far…

This company was launched back in June of 2010 as Startup Dating, when we organized an event to match entrepreneurs, investors, and system developers. Since there were very few events of this kind in Japan at that time, over 2,000 people in total attended our meet-ups. In order to serve better our readers, we subsequently partnered with tech blogs and news media around Asia and started bringing our Japanese readers translations of their English news updates. We continue to do this today.

In January of this year, we launched an English news site as well, aimed at telling global readers and industry folks about what’s going on in the Japan tech and startup scene.

What will be changing?

Having evolved much since our initial launch, The Bridge aims to connect entrepreneurs with one another, and serve as a meeting point for those in the startup scene. Our event organizing initative has created many opportunities for people to connect, and our media presence has brought informative news updates focused on the Asian startup scene.

Our next step is to create a startup database that will help entrepreneurs and investors connect each other. We expect it to be among the best of its kind in the region.

When we talk about a startup database, many of our readers will think of TechCrunch’s CrunchBase or Naval Ravikhant’s Angelist. While these are useful, there’s no relevant service in the Asia region because of language barriers and geographical diversity.

For startups here, this makes it extremely difficult to see who’s who in the various ecosystems. To help combat this problem, we are create a platform that helps them get to know each other.

Pivoting to a database-driven business?

Some of our readers thought perhaps we would stop publishing news updates and pivot to create a database business. That’s not true. While we can’t disclose many details at the moment, we’ll be trying to integrate news updates and database entries to help our readers connect each other.

What is this scoring system?

We recently added a new feature called “The Bridge Score” to our website. Every single article on the website has a certain amount of Facebook likes or retweets, and the score is simply the sum total of these social media actions. It is an indication of how much our editors and readers pay their attention to a certain article or company. We’re continuously working to evolving this feature so that the score will be a better reflection of the social impact of the article.

We’d like to say thanks!

We’ve been devoting ourselves to this project with considering to how we can create more opportunities for entrepreneurs. In the last several months, we’ve been experiencing many challenges in managing bilingual startup news. But our next step is a big one. And that’s why we thought this would be a good time to change not our brand and company name.

We want to thank the many readers, partners, sponsors, and entrepreneurs who have come with us on this ride so far. We plan on going much further, and so do stick with us!.

The Bridge Team with Co-founder Takeshi Hirano a.k.a. Kigoyama