Ken Kobayashi, Director of Investment  at TMAM-GO Engagement Fund (JEF), uses a fable by Aesop to illustrate the unique nature of  our brand of Japan’s activism which we  define as “constructive engagement”. We believe that, in Japan, a constructive and culturally acceptable Japanese way” of engaging is much more effective over the long-term than a more aggressive, short-term approach.

In the story, the wind and the sun bet on which one can force a man to remove a coat. The wind blew so hard, the birds clung to the trees.   It became cold and frosty. The man started to shiver. But the harder the wind blew, the tighter he clung to his coat.   The sun came out and started to warm the air.  The temperature got so balmy that the man took his coat off….

“The North Wind refers to Western activists that tried to force change at Japanese companies, They “would generally just say what they thought was right. But it didn’t really work with Japanese corporate culture. We’re partly a reaction to them. We take this culture into account.”

To read more about JEF’ approach and how the fund came into existence, please read the full article here.

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