The Next Chapter for Japanese Rugby: How Toshiba is Helping to Write It

2023/09/18 Toshiba Clip Team

  • The Japan national rugby team is taking on the world.
  • Toshiba is working to solve world issues.
  • Toshiba and the Japan national rugby team together “turn on the promise of a new future.”
The Next Chapter for Japanese Rugby: How Toshiba is Helping to Write It

Watching rugby is a ­unique experience. The sound of the players breathing can be heard all the way to the stands. Muscled bodies crashing into one another. Before you know it, one player or another has the ball and is sprinting across the field. There is an unspoken frenzy of communication, as the ball is passed to a teammate. The player lunges across the goal line to make a try. The match ends with the referee’s call of “No side!”

 

Rugby is a captivating sport because it is full of action and combines order and freedom. Players can pass or kick the ball, and they can run as far as they want while holding it. The ball can be held by any player at any time, so teams can switch between offense and defense instantly. In most cases, individual players must make the decision they believe is best for the team based on the current strategy and situation. However, each player always uses their own unique skills to help their team score a try.

 

A try is how rugby players score points. It also represents taking on a challenge. When a team scores a try, they are given the opportunity to kick the ball towards the goal. These tries—these efforts to take on the next challenge—are the common thread that links the Japan national rugby team and Toshiba. The Japan national rugby team’s goal is to lead international rugby and become agents of social change that transcend the sport itself. Toshiba is currently in the midst of its transformation into a CPS*1 technology company, using the manufacturing expertise accumulated over the past 150 years to solve social issues on a global scale. Here, we explore the similarities between these two entities and the reasons why Toshiba is so committed to supporting the Japan national rugby team.

*1: Systems in which real-world data is analysed in cyberspace, then fed back into the real world as useful information

 

From Toshiba corporate brand movie “Cherry Blossom Emblem of Japan Rugby National Team”

From Toshiba corporate brand movie “Cherry Blossom Emblem of Japan Rugby National Team”

The Japan National Rugby Team and the Power of Each Individual Try

Rugby leaders from ­around the world convened in London in November 2022 and March 2023 to discuss the sport’s priorities for maintaining its appeal and accessibility, especially as it continues to grow in popularity. Bill Beaumont, chairman of the World Rugby Council, emphasised the need for rugby to constantly evolve and improve. And indeed, the world of rugby is even now in the midst of its transformation.

 

Priority initiatives as determined by the World Rugby

Priority initiatives as determined by the World Rugby

This also applies to the Japan national rugby team. Since its inception, the team has believed that each individual try has the power to change the future. They have fought and tried tirelessly, and have now reached the point where they can compete on equal terms with some of the world’s best teams. They have also been able to create both men’s and women’s teams that have broken into the top four in the global rankings, train referees that can compete on the world stage, and promote women’s rugby. The Japan national rugby team trains themselves to the limit to become a singular entity, a single team. They enter their games with well-honed, precisely-crafted strategies. They believe that the best preparation leads to the best results. The way in which the team approaches their games is an expression of the potential and courage inherent in all human beings, and the importance of the process.

 

The Japan national rugby team believes that the best preparation leads to the best results.

Developing Technologies One After the Other to Solve Issues Across the World

So where does Toshiba fit into this? Why is Toshiba so supportive of the Japan national rugby team? The reason is simple—Toshiba’s beliefs and approach are one and the same as those of Japanese rugby. While rugby and business are different, the shared desire to make the world a better place is what unites. Also the same is this approach of discovering new possibilities, envisioning various results, and thinking of ways to get there. We at Toshiba see ourselves in the Japan national rugby team. And by rooting for them, we too become inspired and motivated, and ever more confident about our Purpose: “We turn on the promise of a new day.”

 

Toshiba’s Purpose

Toshiba’s Purpose

Throughout its history, Toshiba has worked to solve social issues and ensure the sustainability of people and the world. When people needed light, Toshiba developed light bulbs, and social infrastructure such as power generators that would produce the power to meet that need. During Japan’s period of rapid economic growth, Toshiba produced household appliances that helped to improve people’s lives. And today, the company is expanding into the digital realm to meet the needs of the 21st century. In all of these ways, Toshiba has offered the kind of value that society demands, worked to solve social problems, and helped to improve the lives and culture of people all around the world.

 

World firsts and Japan firsts produced by Toshiba.

World firsts and Japan firsts produced by Toshiba.
1: Japan’s first induction motor / 2: Electric washing machine and electric refrigerator / 3: Color TV / 4: Automatic zip code reader / 5: Japanese word processor / 6: Large capacity ultra-supercritical-pressure steam turbine / 7: 4 M-bit NAND-type EEPROM / 8: Multi-parameter phased array weather radar

Toshiba and the Japan National Rugby Team Turn on the Promise of a New Day

The Japan national rugby team’s jersey, nicknamed the “cherry blossom jersey,” features a motif of cherry blossoms in full bloom on the left side of the chest. The motif originally had one flower in bloom, with one half-bloomed, and the other still in its bud. This was a symbol of the team’s aspiration to one day be strong enough to hold their own against England, the country where the sport originated. And now the dream has come true: the three cherry blossoms are now fully in bloom, and the Japan national rugby team is making their presence known on the world stage. The appeal of rugby has been cemented in Japanese culture through the rise of the national team, and the team will continue to turn on the promise of a new day.

 

Former vs. current uniform of the Japan national rugby team

Former vs. current uniform of the Japan national rugby team

Toshiba, is currently in the midst of developing, commercialising, and implementing advanced technologies as a CPS technology company, using its track record and expertise in manufacturing to solve social issues on a global scale. In doing so, it is important to make the most of the power of data. Many people use smartphones to exchange information on a daily basis, and IoT*2 technologies and sensors have become commonplace in manufacturing sites. The amount of data that can be collected from these devices is enormous. This data can be analysed in cyberspace and converted into useful information or knowledge, which can then be used to help solve social issues. Toshiba will also help turn on the promise of a new day by using the power of data to achieve shared, world-scale goals such as carbon neutrality and a circular economy.

*2: Systems in which objects that were not previously connected to the Internet are connected to servers and cloud services to facilitate the exchange of information

 

“Try Next!” is the shared attitude of the Japan national rugby team and Toshiba. They have the guts and drive to handle the present and the ambition to strive for the future.

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