John Stich, honorary consul-general of Japan in Dallas, started a spreadsheet five years ago to track the number of Japanese companies with headquarters or other corporate functions in North Texas.

Every year, his list has grown.

Last year, he estimates he added more than a dozen newcomers, bringing the current company count to 164. Dallas, Irving, Richardson and Plano top the list of North Texas cities with the most Japan-based companies.

I explored the Nippon-North Texas connection in this week’s cover story in our print edition, using Toyota’s move of its North American headquarters to Plano to highlight the trend.

Here are the North Texas cities that host the largest number of Japanese companies:

  • Dallas — 41 companies
  • Irving — 34
  • Richardson — 19
  • Plano — 18
  • Grapevine — 10
  • Addison — 9
  • Carrollton — 8
  • Fort Worth — 8

I’ve also included a list of 25 notable Japanese companies that call North Texas their second home at the end of this blog.

Japanese companies choose North Texas for many of the same reasons that other companies do, Stich and others I talked to for the story said. A strong workforce. A central location, giving executives a three-hour plane trip to either U.S. coast. Plenty of land on which to build and a variety of buildings to lease. Relatively affordable housing. A reasonable regulatory environment. Low taxes.

Also critically important is what Stich called “Japanese infrastructure.”

That includes a wide range, including a K-12 school in Carrollton that daughters and sons of Japanese ex-patriots attend on Saturday to keep up with their Japanese language, history and other lessons not taught in their regular Monday through Friday classes.

For those looking for more fun than school on Saturday can provide, there’s Texas Rangers baseball, featuring pitcher Yu Darvish, who is wildly popular in Japan, Stich said. Or there’s Fort Worth Japanese Garden, built in 1973 with plants and construction materials donated by Fort Worth’s sister city Nagaoka, Japan. Or there’s the Samurai Collection in the the Ann & Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Museum in Dallas, which houses suits of armor, helmets, masks and weaponry, and the nearby Trammell and Margaret Crow Collection of Asian Art, which has a serene sculpture garden and permanent and rotating exhibitions, lectures and gallery talks.

For the hungry, there’s a growing availability and quality of Japanese grocery stores, ramen houses and sushi restaurants, Stich added.

Here are 25 notable Japan-based companies in North Texas:

  • 7-Eleven in Irving
  • American Honda Motor Co. in Irving
  • Brother International in Carrollton
  • Canon Business Solutions in Dallas
  • Canon USA in Irving
  • Fuji Semiconductor in Carrollton
  • Fujifilm USA in Irving
  • Fujitsu Network Communications in Richardson
  • Hitachi Data Systems in Addison
  • Hoya VisionCare North America in Lewisville
  • Japan Airlines at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport
  • Kawasaki Motors USA in Fort Worth
  • Kubota Tractor in Grapevine
  • Kyocera Mita in Irving
  • Mitsubishi International in Irving
  • NEC Corp. of America in Irving
  • Panasonic Enterprise Solutions in Coppell
  • Sanyo Energy USA in Frisco and The Colony
  • Sony Electronics in Dallas
  • Sony Pictures in Richardson
  • Sumitomo Machinery in Carrollton
  • Tohatsu America in Farmers Branch
  • Toshiba Business Solutions in Addison
  • Toyota Motos North America in Plano
  • Yazaki Energy Solutions in Plano

Presented by Dallas Business Journal

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