An exclusive interview with Tomoaki Kojima, CEO of Sourcenext B.V.
- Corporate Headquarters: Japan (European sales handled by subsidiary Sourcenext B.V., Netherlands)
- Industry: Software and computer peripherals product development and distribution
- Hit Products: Pocketalk: a pocket electronic translator.
The Challenge: Large scale ramp-up
- Before contacting Next Level in 2019, Sourcenext was operating Europe from the Netherlands, and was struggling to get the right channel setup for France and southern Europe.
- There were a few leads, but following up was hard to do remotely and in English, so Sourcenext decided to look for local support.
- Sourcenext selected Next Level to increase their awareness in France, deepen relationships with existing distributors and retailers, and source new ones.
- Interacting almost daily with the team in Amsterdam, Next Level was up and running quickly and was essential to the fruition and delivery of Sourcenext’s first distributor deals in France, Belgium and likely more soon.
“ Sourcenext was founded in Japan in 1996, as a software and IT products distributor and developer, with the goal of spreading happiness and excitement to people all around the globe through excellent products. That philosophy still drives our actions today.
For Pocketalk, we elected to open our European office in Amsterdam. It’s in the European Union, English-speaking manpower is abundant, and logistics is easy to anywhere in continental Europe. ”
How did Next Level contribute to your business expansion into Europe?
“ Next Level was essential to get into French retail.
Our Account Manager has a huge network, and was extremely efficient and proactive. Besides France, he also supported our penetration in Belgium and Switzerland.
We are greatly appreciative of our Next Level Account Manager. He has been working very hard. He always has the broader perspective over the European market and gives us proper advice on our sales strategy. His personality is diligent and precise.
Next Level was also very responsive with sudden changes in the business environment. When our business was impacted by Covid 19, meaning less travelers and challenging time for us in the travel market, Next Level was even more active than before looking for alternatives, and proposing ways forward and workarounds to keep going until the end of the crisis. ”
Originally a small Japanese startup, how did you gain visibility in Europe?
“ Our first contacts in Europe were established with the help of Jetro. Then concurrently with Next Level’s direct sales approach, we increased our retail visibility and consumer awareness though events, trade shows, and our first online webinars – another innovative idea provided by Next Level. ”
Can you mention a few concrete results?
“ Yes, thanks to Next Level, we successfully got Pocketalk listed with 7 key online resellers, and quickly got shelf space in 20 sales point throughout France, in spite of the Coronavirus outbreak. ”
Download a PDF version: Sourcenext Europe