9/26 – Seminar in Chicago: “The Vital Role of Director Training in Japan’s Corporate Governance Reforms”

The Board Director Training Institute of Japan (BDTI) is a government-certified nonprofit providing one-day “director training” courses in English and Japanese, and governance-related seminars and e-learning courses. These programs teach participants key knowledge needed to serve on, report to, or analyze boards in Japan.

What topics are covered by such programs, and why? What issues surround the introduction of director training, or governance training, in the case of Japan? Why is training believed to be utterly essential to the success of Japan’s corporate governance reforms? What is the best approach – who needs to betrained, how? Why is the potential upside for Japan’s economy big?

In this seminar event, the proposer of Japan’s Corporate Governance Code will answer these questions, using many of the materials that are actually used in BDTI’s English director training course, the “Director Boot Camp”. The program will kick off with lunch at 12:oo noon. Starting about 4:00 pm until 6:00 pm, the lecturer will lead interactive discussion about what the reforms mean from an investor’s perspective, what changes and debates are taking place “behind the scenes” in Japanese companies now, and what sort of tactics for investment and engagement with Japanese companies are likely to be most effective.

Lunch is included!

Place:  Offices of Advisory Research, 180 N. Stetson Avenue, Suite 5500, Chicago, IL 60601.
(Telephone: 312-565-4663 (Drew Edwards); general tel. #, 312-565-1414.)

Date and Time:  12:00 am to 5:30 pm (or later as necessary), on Monday, September 26th.

Lecturer: Nicholas Benes, Representative Director, BDTI; Chair of the Growth Strategy Task Force, American Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ACCJ); proposer of Japan’s corporate governance code.

Donations:   There is no formal charge for the course and lunch.  However, If they wish to support BDTI’s activities as a nonprofit organization serving society[1] , participants are asked to consider making a donation of  25,000 Yen,  payable in Yen by Visa or MasterCard credit card to BDTI.
Donations can be made using this link.

To sign up, please register online before September 23rd by accessing this registration page.

Nicholas Benes (Summary CV)


Mr. Benes received his B.A. in political science from Stanford University, and a JD-MBA degree from UCLA, after which he worked at JP Morgan for 11 years. He is an inactive member of the bar in California and New York, and is certified as a securities salesman in London and Japan. He was twice-elected Governor of the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ACCJ) and was long-time Chair of its FDI Committee; and presently chairs the Growth Strategy Task Force. In the past, he was active for many years as a member of the Experts Committee of the Japan Investment Council, an advisory committee to the Japanese Cabinet on FDI policy. In total Mr. Benes has eight years of experience as a director of various Japanese corporations, having served as an independent outside director at Alps Mapping, the listed company Cecile Ltd., and Livedoor Holdings (post-scandal). Currently, he is an independent director at Imagica Robot Holdings, Inc. In 2010, he served as a member of the Financial Service Agency’s Corporate Governance Liaison Committee, which had been formed to provide private sector input to the Ministry of Justice and the Legal Affairs Advisory Council regarding amendment of Japanese Company Law. In 2013, Mr. Benes proposed that the LDP promulgate a Corporate Governance Code under the oversight of the FSA, a policy which was subsequently adopted as the foremost “pillar” of the government’s growth strategy. He then advised members of the Japanese diet and the Financial Services Agency with regard to the drafting process and content of the corporate governance code.


[1] BDTI is the only public-interest non-profit (公益社団法人)certified by the Japanese government to focus on training about directorship and governance topics. For more information about BDTI please see https://bdti.or.jp/en/ .

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