Episode 12

Published on:

15th Aug 2022

BBQs to Mānuka Honey: Leveraging local infrastructure for success in Japan with Adam Hall

What if you could create a single origin brand for mānuka honey, much like Central Otago pinot noir? We learnt that was absolutely possible and has actually happened, from our guest Adam Hall’s work in the Japanese market. He’s a seller extraordinaire having sold premium NZ wine, brand-name barbeques and now mānuka honey.  We loved hearing about how his focus is on leaving the New Zealand brand in a better place than where he found it! 

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In this episode you’ll hear:

  • Adam’s experience selling Weber-brand BBQs in a country where barbequing is not really “a thing”
  • Pitfalls that Adam fell into himself in setting up his company in Japan
  • Demystifying your product and making the purchasing decision journey easier for customers 
  • What’s hot in Japan now and what’s coming! 

About Adam

First boots on the ground for US BBQ manufacturer Weber to set up business in Japan, it was Adam who lead the team in transforming the business from a 'distributor model' to a 'direct sales model.' Adam grew the BBQ business with his passion through Ecom/DTC/Mass selling as well as specialty and Club retailers. Whilst BBQ’ing may be second nature in good old New Zealand, Japan was another story. In order to create a BBQ category in Japan Adam was tasked with setting up unique consumer facing experiences such as Japan's First BBQ school and the World's First Weber BBQ Park.

From March 2022, Adam set himself yet another new challenge - to turn around the UK-based homeware brand of Joseph Joseph in Japan. But wait, there’s more. Not satisfied with a day job, yet another new project at hand. Adam is creating a category for 'Single Origin Craft Mānuka Honey' with the establishment of his own importing, sales and marketing business in Japan.

A true serial entrepreneurial kiwi. We bring you Adam Hall! 

Connect with Adam

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/adam-hall-221479b2

Pouatu Mānuka Honey: www.pouatumanuka.jp

Joseph Joseph: https://josephjoseph.jp/

REI International: https://rei-npo.org/ja/ 



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

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

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwdbd0QSHSLlOSPcpceHOcA

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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.