Robert Azar is a US-Asia business and cultural expert with thirty-five years of executive level success. As a strategy advisor, he specializes in achieving excellence in global business development, intercultural management and problem resolution.

R. Azar previously lived in the Far East for seven years; worked in Japanese corporations for ten years; and developed and managed U.S. businesses in Asian markets for twenty-five years. He is fluent in the Japanese language – including reading, writing, and speaking – and familiar with Korean.

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Global Spotlight: Meet the Members of the N.C. Coalition for Global Competitiveness
November 2016 – Global Spotlight: Meet the Members of the N.C. Coalition for Global Competitiveness

The 40-plus members of the N.C. Coalition for Global Competitiveness are an impressive group of North Carolina leaders with diverse talents and expertise in the global arena. Global Spotlight is a space to introduce you to Coalition members and their work helping to make North Carolina the most globally engaged state in the nation.

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Memo to US execs: Doing business in Japan demands a company be the very best it can be
November 2016 – Memo to US execs: Doing business in Japan demands a company be the very best it can be

Editor’s note, November 17, 2016: Analysis: As Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe meets with President-elect Donald Trump in New York, it’s a good time to look at trade relations between the two countries. Note to U.S. executives: Better understanding the requirements of the world’s third largest economy and better preparing for them will enable more American companies to succeed in conducting business in Japan.

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Arriving For My New Book Presentation At Keidanren
August 2016 – Roundtable Discussion with Mr. Robert Azar on Bridging Japanese and American Business Cultures

On August 29, 2016, Keidanren USA hosted Mr. Robert Azar, President & CEO of Asia Strategic Advisors LLC, for a roundtable event titled “Improving Workplace Productivity & Relations by Bridging Japanese and American Business Cultures.”  Mr. Azar gave a presentation based on his new book, “Navigating Japan’s Business Culture – A Practical Guide to Succeeding in the Japanese Market.”  The Q&A session featured a lively exchange regarding such issues as the recent changes Japanese culture has been undergoing, differences with Chinese and Korean business culture, and the quest to find universal business values.

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It has been my distinct privilege to work with Robert Azar on many different projects and in many different capacities off and on over the past 30 years. The depth and breadth of Mr. Azar's experience in doing business in Asia is truly staggering. I cannot think of any non-Japanese person who understands the language and culture of Japan better than Mr. Azar. It is this ...unique and thorough understanding of culture that enables Mr. Azar to help his clients and business partners to succeed in Japan and other Asian markets.

Paul Taylor, Esq. Vice President & General Counsel Ajinomoto North America, Inc.

The depth of understanding in Navigating Japan’s Business Culture is unprecedented. As a Japanese reader, I was surprised to learn the cultural dynamics that govern management and communication in Japanese business. Azar’s book is informative, practical, and strategic, and will help you achieve your goals in Japan via effective strategies and correct cultural understanding. I recommend this book to everyone who engages in Japanese business, even to Japanese businessmen.

Koyama TomohisaExecutive Advisor to the President, Nagoya University / Former Deputy Director, New and Renewable Energy Division, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan

Robert Azar's book is essential reading for foreign businessmen looking for success in the Japanese market. He has had over 35 years practical experience in Japanese business, academic training about Japan, and is fluent in Japanese, a rare and invaluable combination. You will profit from reading this book.

Prof. Gerald Curtis BurgessProfessor Emeritus of Japanese Government, Columbia University

Navigating Japan’s Business Culture consists of tons of useful tips as well as actual examples in the Japanese business world. I was most impressed by Robert Azar’s understanding of Japan’s historical background as well as the intricacies of Japan’s actual business practices. (He sometimes knows Japanese culture more than I do!) This book provides deep insight based on his broad business experience and his scholarly study. I highly recommend this book as a practical guide to those who want to really understand and overcome the cultural gap and succeed in the Japanese market.

Matsuo TakashiDirector, Sumitomo Electric Lightwave Corporation

My architectural/engineering firm has navigated the intricacies and challenges of doing business with Japanese companies since 1985. I only wish Robert Azar’s book had been available when we started this journey. Azar provides keen insight into the business culture of Japanese companies and describes strategies and tactics to be successful. If one is doing business with Japanese this is required reading.

John L. Atkins, IIIHonorary General Consul of Japan in Raleigh, North Carolina 2009–2014

Robert Azar is a gifted global communicator with astounding insight into the enigmatic and opaque business practices of the Japanese executive. Whether you are looking to invest in Japan or develop an import relationship with a Japanese company, Robert’s insights will be instrumental to your success.

Rick Van Sant, Ph.D.Executive Director, Center for International Understanding Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Robert Azar is an accomplished businessman, consultant and commentator with vast experience in Asia – and particularly in Japan. His fluency in Japanese, his deep understanding of the culture and how it shapes Japanese business practices and his academic training in East Asian political, economic and cultural affairs make his insights a valuable resource for those doing business with this valued strategic and economic partner.

James T. Fain IIIFormer North Carolina Commerce Secretary, 2001–2009

Knowing ‘what’ is good, but knowing ‘why’ is critical. Robert Azar's 35 years of living and doing business in Japan sheds valuable insight into why some companies succeed and others fail in Japan. His business experiences combined with his deep cultural understandings make this book an essential tool.

Elaine MarshallNorth Carolina Secretary of State, 1997–present

This book is a must read by all who engage in international economic development. The North Carolina and Japanese economies are hugely important to each other. Understanding each other better; understanding how to better collaborate; ...honoring each other's culture – all extremely important. Robert Azar understands... all this better than most. Read his book; enjoy his depth and most importantly LEARN from him. He's made it all work.

Norris TolsonFormer North Carolina Commerce Secretary
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