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BMW Group Financial Services Japan is running this programme ‘BMW Innovation Lab 2018’ for the first time in Japan, to explore how start-up technology can help in offering an enhanced experience to its customers and dealers. The programme will be run in collaboration with corporate innovation specialist L Marks. High quality start-ups from all over the world are invited to participate in the programme.

Applications are now closed

About BMW Innovation Lab 2018

This programme will be conducted over a period of 10 weeks at BMW Group Financial Services Japan offices, in Tokyo. Start-up companies selected through the screening process shall not only have a chance to seek new business opportunities, but will also be able to receive mentoring from the leadership team of the company.

This programme will enable the start-ups to test their products at scale, network with industry experts while enjoying a collaborative environment. Selected start-ups will also have a chance to access funding from L Marks.

From Mike Wetherell
President and CEO of BMW Group Financial Services Japan

“This programme is all about finding new ideas and new ways to think. While the solutions from this Innovation Lab should target our customers and dealers in Japan, we invite start-ups from all around the world to participate in this journey of innovation.”

Our Mentors.

Mike Wetherell

President and CEO

BMW Group Financial Services Japan

Tom Stepanchak

Sales and Marketing Director

BMW Group Financial Services Japan

Roger Rooden

Chief Financial Officer

BMW Group Financial Services Japan

Satoko Nakatani

Chief Operations Officer

BMW Group Financial Services Japan

Takuya Hashimoto

Chief Risk Officer

BMW Group Financial Services Japan

Areas of interest.

The BMW Innovation Lab 2018 will focus on four key innovation challenges:

Provide delight through the journey of financing

We are looking for solutions which help us analyse the voice of dealers and voice of customers; solutions that enable us to create offers that best suit our dealers’ and customers' preferences.
Ultimately, our goal is to “Make Financing Fun" for both our dealers and our customers.

Optimizing our processes for a seamless customer experience

We are looking for solutions that can help us provide a seamless customer experience, with the best speed and quality. We want to achieve this by automating and optimising our internal processes.

Towards effective handling of future risks

We would like this Innovation Lab to deliver tools which can help us assess the future risks effectively by utilizing various internal and external data inputs. This helps us strengthen the foundation of trust with our customers which we have built so far.


If you also have an idea which isn't listed under the categories above but is relevant to the business of BMW Group Financial Services Japan, then please apply. Surprise us!


06 April 2018

Applications close

Applications close: Midnight JST, Friday 6th April.

17 - 18 May 2018

Pitch Day

Pitch Day is your start-up’s chance to pitch to a BMW senior leadership team to win a place on the programme. You’ll have the chance to expand on your application and convince the panel that you’re right for the programme.

18 June 2018

Programme starts

The ten-week intensive collaboration starts here. Over this time, we’ll set key objectives for what you want to achieve in collaboration with BMW and get mentorship from senior leaders and external experts to help you towards these goals.

07 September 2018

Demo day

Demo Day is where you’ll show us what your start-up has achieved over the 10 weeks and present your proposal for future engagement with BMW.

Get in touch

BMW Group Financial Services Japan

BMW Group Financial Services Japan was established in 1989 to provide financial solutions to the Japanese market. The company offers BMW and MINI and Rolls-Royce customers a variety of flexible lease and loan financing options to suit their needs for new or pre-owned vehicles, as well as insurance products, mobility services and credit card services.

BMW Group Financial Services Japan established its position as a pioneer in the industry when it became one of the first finance companies to develop and launch a residual value-based loan in 1994. In 1996, it became the first company in Japan to launch a corporate lease program of imported cars. Soon after that in 1998, the company launched BMW Group-branded insurance. Since its establishment, BMW Group Financial Services Japan has provided innovative and industry-leading financial products such as the Future Value Loan in 2016. The company plays an important role in strengthening the BMW Group’s focus on customers and will continue to provide a broad range of financial solutions.

L Marks

L Marks is a corporate innovation specialist and early- stage investor. They build bridges between large corporates seeking to innovate more quickly with young companies with disruptive technologies, products and services. Founded in 2012 by serial entrepreneur Stuart Marks, they run bespoke start-up partnership programmes across industry sectors, supporting rapid innovation and connecting them with the best start-ups.

They work with clients such as Arsenal, Mischon de Reya and International Airlines Group (IAG) to identify where they believe the challenges are in their businesses and then turn these into opportunities for improvement and innovation. Each programme is tailored to deliver real solutions to the corporate partners and create real opportunities for start-up to test and grow their product with a major partner.