DBS provides investment and consulting services all over the world. President & CEO Yuta Dobashi left a leading company to launch this year-old venture and has created many hit services. Demonstrating his talent as an entrepreneur, he has led multiple businesses to success and built assets by transferring and selling these businesses. These days, instead of pursuing corporate profits and business expansion, he is engaged in investment and consulting services within his sphere of influence and trains young managers through the business. We talked to Mr. Dobashi about things like the key points for selecting investments and his management philosophy and vision for the future.
―Please describe your business for us.
We have two businesses: management consulting and investment. We offer our management consulting services to clients in Japan, and these are primarily based on connections like former subordinates and junior employees. We do not take on very many new projects. Instead, this business is conducted out of a desire to, as much as possible, share with outstanding young managers who possess great potential my own experience and the things I have learned along the way. It’s more like my life’s work or social contribution than a business, and from time to time, depending on the circumstances, I even do it for free.
The investment business is conducted both in Japan and overseas. We invest in companies as an angel investor and offer management advice as necessary. This business’ style is not one of pursuing profits, either, so we don’t focus on the company’s stock price or our exit strategy. Instead, emphasis is placed on whether or not it looks like a fun company with which to do business. Outside Japan, we invest in promising local companies, primarily in places like Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan, based on referrals.
―What is the domestic to overseas ratio?
About 70% of our investments are made overseas. We currently have five clients in Japan and five overseas between the consulting and investment businesses. Every one of them has or does things that I don’t or can’t do. In the case of Japanese companies, I prefer that those strengths are embodied in the products and services. This is because I have learned by experience that when Japanese people engage in business overseas, it’s difficult to succeed unless the services are apparent.
―Can you tell us about the companies you invest in?
Certainly. One of them is SuggesCom, which runs a service called “VEGETARE.” Based on the concept of spreading Japan’s tastes and delicious flavors around the world through vegetables, the VEGETARE service involves selling vegetable gifts and providing kitchen vegetable gardens for dietary education. Additionally, choice Japanese fruits and vegetables are processed into juices and jams and distributed to high-end department stores like Takashimaya and Isetan. They are also taking a positive stance toward expanding sales to overseas markets and have already been approached by an interested buyer from New York. This is precisely the kind of passionate company we want to invest in as an angel investor and to support within my capabilities as necessary.