Startup Loan Program


This program provides loans to a person who starts up a new business based on the examination of the accuracy of its business plan without any requirement for security or guarantor (for a corporation, without requirement for guarantee by its representative).

The SME Unit provides active support to SMEs trying to develop new businesses with high growth potential, such as venture companies, through Loans to Foster Growth of New Businesses. Since the program began in February 2000, 389.1 billion yen has been loaned to 8,626 companies (as of March 31, 2016). In addition, the SME Unit also offers an unsecured loan program through acquisition of new share options issued by companies. 

SMEs and micro businesses account for 99% of all businesses in Japan, and are both the source of Japanese economic vitality as well as the primary force underpinning regional economies. The size and conditions of each SME and micro business differ, such as companies that sustain the regional economy with many employees, long-established companies with a history over one hundred years and family-owned private shops.

The SME Unit provides a wide range of support to meet the individual needs of each SME and micro business through its financial tools, Loan Programs, Credit Insurance Programs and Securitization Support Programs.


Japan Finance Corporation


Who is eligible:
An individual who falls under any of the following cases:
(1) A person who starts a business that creates jobs (including part-time jobs)
(2) A person who starts a business that adds any contrivance to the existing technologies or services and addresses diverse needs.
(3) A person who started a new business as described in (1) or (2) above and has not filed a tax return for the second terms.
*1: There may be other eligible cases depending upon work experience, etc.
*2: Excluded are moneylending businesses, certain adult-entertainment businesses and certain pleasure and entertainment businesses.
*3: A person who has yet to start a business or file a first-time tax return after starting the business is required to show that he has his own fund equal to or greater than one half of the total capital required for starting the business.


Policy-based financing in Japan not only provides financial support under the nation's key policies towards certain fields such as new business development, business revitalization and overseas expansion, fields that involve high risks which private financial institutions find it hard to support, it also quantitatively supplements the loans provided by private financial institutions whose lending attitudes may be affected by economic stagnations. 

Based on these policies, while supplementing private financial institutions as a policy-based financial institution specialized in SMEs, the SME Unit supports the growth and development of SMEs through its financial tools as well as serving as a safety net functions.


The SME Unit facilitates funds to 1.40 million SMEs and micro businesses (approximately 37%) and accounts for 13% of outstanding loans to SMEs and micro businesses. 

Since the program began in February 2000, 389.1 billion yen has been loaned to 8,626 companies (as of March 31, 2016).


Global Entrepreneurship Network
United States
Global Entrepreneurship Network
United States