Episode 19

Published on:

21st Nov 2022

Localising your brand in Japan and becoming the #1 refill retailer with ecostore’s Hamish McCaroll and Alice Lynch

Iconic 30 year old Kiwi brand ecostore joins us on Jandals and they go above and beyond to share the story of their journey of entering the Japan market. Now becoming known as a leading brand in the refill market in all of Japan, ecostore is encouraging Japanese consumers to put their growing interest in SDGs into practice and making an effort to help consumers understand how their products support people and the environment.

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In this episode you’ll hear:

  • How a cold email led to ecostore finding their hot new venture partner in Japan
  • What happened when they tried to transplant something that worked in NZ to Japan 
  • How ecostore have localised their messaging to speak to new consumers in Japan
  • What kind of attention to detail is important and why being “Ichi ban” or number one in something is so important.

About Hamish

Hamish McCarroll is ecostore’s Export Manager responsible for the company’s growth in offshore markets. He has been with ecostore since 2016 and was previously New Zealand Export Manager for international food company KraftHeinz. Prior to that he lived and worked in financial markets in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Hamish enjoys spending time with his young family, and everything New Zealand’s beautiful outdoors and oceans has to offer!

About Alice

Alice Lynch is ecostore’s NZ-based Japan assistant providing support linguistically and culturally between ecostore NZ & ecostore Japan. Born in NZ to a Japanese mother & Kiwi father, Alice has been raised in-between cultures and brings a unique cross-cultural outlook to her role. After studying arts, media & language interpretation at the University of Auckland & AUT, Alice joined ecostore in 2018.

Connect with ecostore

Website: https://ecostore.jp/ 

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/ecostore.jp/ 

Line: https://line.me/R/ti/p/%40muq6587d 


Made with Care: https://www.nzte.govt.nz/page/made-with-care-japan-trade  

Fernmark Licence Programme: https://www.fernmark.nzstory.govt.nz/ 

Connect with Jayne and Catherine

Linked In: https://www.linkedin.com/company/jandals-in-japan-podcast/ 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jandalsinjapan/ 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jandalsinjapan 

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/@jandalsinjapan 

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About the Podcast

Jandals in Japan
Bringing The Land of the Long White Cloud to The Land of the Rising Sun
The best show about New Zealanders doing business in Japan, bringing The Land of the Long White Cloud to The Land of the Rising Sun
How do you build a brand in Japan and nurture a loyal customer base?
What do you need to have in your tool belt if you are thinking of coming to Japan to launch a business here?
Japan is often considered to be in the "too hard" basket but we are here to open up the black box of doing business in Japan.
We will share stories from successful Kiwis selling their products and services here in Japan.
They'll tell you their tips for success and pitfalls to avoid.
They'll share their challenges and what they did to overcome them.
They will tell you things you can't find in textbooks or on the internet.
We will also be sharing the latest intel and insights on Japan from our on-the-ground presence
And you'll hear some super business culture and other tips from us sprinkled throughout.
Grab a glass of sake and let's get into it.
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About your hosts

Jayne Nakata

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Jayne Nakata is a Southland girl who arrived in Japan in 2002, planning to stay just two years. 20 years later she is still living in Fukushima Prefecture with her Japanese husband and two children. When the triple disaster hit in 2011, Jayne made the commitment to stay in Fukushima and contribute to rebuilding the area. She is the host of the award winning podcast Transformations with Jayne, which is a favourite with international women living in Japan. She is also the double award winning podcast producer and manager for PodLaunch with Jayne.

Catherine O’Connell

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Born and bred in Christchurch, Catherine O'Connell landed in Japan in 2002, on a one year contract, and 20 years later she's planted her feet firmly in Japan. She built a wealth of business and cultural experience working at the coal face of brand-name Japanese corporates as in house legal counsel. Catherine took a leap of faith down the entrepreneurial route launching her own multi award-winning boutique law firm in Tokyo in 2018, being the first Kiwi and first foreign female to do so. She is Vice Chair of the Australian & New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan and helps businesses thrive in the Japan market delivering business insights meshed with legal instincts. Catherine is also host of the award-winning Lawyer on Air Podcast.