William Saito’s Career as a Venture Capitalist

About William Saito

William Saito is a venture capitalist of Japanese descent. He was born in 1971 and has lived in the U.S all his life. According to William, his parents moved to the United States from Japan two years before he was born. He studied at the Damien High School and went on to advance his studies. For his higher learning, William Saito joined the University of California, Riverside where he was a student in the Biomedical Joint Program at the University. Over the years, William has had an extensive career in his line of work which has resulted in his recognition as one of the top 100 most influential Japanese and is a contributor to Huffington Post.


William Saito started his career at a young age. He ventured into computer security while still in High School and even got to establish his firm. In 1991 while in university, William integrated the firms as I/O Software. This software was geared towards displaying Japanese characters in English. This attracted the attention of Microsoft, and in 2000, a partnership was formed between I/O Software and Microsoft. After working together for four years, Saito made a life-changing decision by selling the Software to Microsoft in 2004 and moved back to Japan.

This drastic move to Japan was only the beginning of a new career for William. He became a venture capitalist and took a keen interest in several Japanese startups and even invested in several of them. He took an active stand in helping the country grow economically and in 2011, he was called upon to provide IT support to the National Diet Committee after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster. In 2012, William Saito was named a council member in the National Policy and Strategy Committee that was supposedly reporting directly to the Japan Prime Minister. From 2013 to 2017, William Saito served as the cyber security advisor to the Cabinet Office. From 2016 to 2017, he took up the role of an advisor to the Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry. He has also served with Japan Airlines in the capacity of a Strategic Advisor.


William Saito’s Stance on How Financial Turmoil Affects Startups

Starting a business is not an easy thing especially when it comes to creating a customer base. However, the biggest obstacle to the growth of a startup business is finances. However, according to William Saito, financial crisis should not be the reason your startup fails. He states that the world most prominent companies were started at a time when the financial situation was not good but they still managed to survive. He speaks on the importance of fiscal responsibility in good years which will bring financial sustainability in the bad years. He encourages startups to embrace risks even if it means failure. It might be a stepping stone to something better.

Follow William Saito on Linkedin.