Featured Profiles

Globalization and the Future of Property Management in Japan

Noriaki George Shiomi is the President of Meiwa Administrations CLD, a company he founded in 1987. He is a certified Real Estate Manager (CPM) and holds multiple certifications from the Ministry of Japan, including certifications as a broker and technical consultant in real derivatives. He has held several leadership positions, including President of IREM-JAPAN, President of the Association of Real Estates Developers, Tokyo Branch, President of the Institute of Real Estates Managers (IREM), Tokyo Branch, and Vice-President of the Real Estates Managers Association of Japan. He is also an accomplished author, having co-written several property management and administration books.


Noriaki George Shiomi, President of Meiwa Administrations CLD, began his career in the real estate industry as a real estate agent before deciding to venture into property management. He noticed that property management was more scarce in Japan than real estate and saw a business opportunity. He started his own company from scratch, and with the help of experienced professionals who shared their knowledge with him, he made a profit by age 26. 


Talking about how he ventured into property management, he recalled, “The US introduced the concept of real estate securitization to Japan in the late 1990s, and it was during a trip with my colleagues from the Japan Property Management Association (JPM) that I was first introduced to the field of property management.” Impressed by what he saw, he returned to Japan and studied the field in greater detail. He formed a study group with his colleagues, and to better serve as a leader in the group, he decided to obtain his CPM (Certified Property Manager) qualification. The CPM certification is now recognized as a uniform global standard in the property management field.


Today, Shiomi is a board member of the Japan Property Management Association (JPM) and a member of the planning committee. His company receives visitors from various real estate companies in South Korea and worldwide. He says, “I never thought my business would reach this level when I started it.”


Shiomi believes that the US has much to teach the world regarding standardizing business practices and sharing them globally. He is convinced that standardization in property management practices has brought him the opportunities to connect with international colleagues and has led him to where he is today. He says, “I attribute my own success in the field of property management to obtaining my CPM certification, which has allowed me to connect and network with colleagues from other countries.” 


As a member of the Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM), Shiomi has found that there are few Japanese members, which has given him the opportunity to represent Japan and share his knowledge and experience with international colleagues. Despite his limited English fluency and international experience, he has always enjoyed engaging with his colleagues at conferences and receptions.


Shiomi highlights the potential for growth in the property management industry in Japan, stating, “Given Japan’s rapidly aging population, Globalization can be seen as a key factor in the success of the country’s economy. Despite the interest of his international colleagues in Japan’s advanced technology, stable society, and unique culture, few Japanese property managers can engage in cross-cultural exchange and promote their ideas on a global scale.” He continues, “This presents an opportunity for Japanese property managers to build trust and form relationships with international colleagues as the number of international individuals living and working in Japan increases.”


He quips, “However, property management is not yet a widely recognized industry in Japan. The goal is to change this perception, as property management offers stability in terms of revenue, despite being closely correlated with the state of the economy.” Additionally, there are opportunities for growth and expansion in emerging markets, such as South East Asia and South America, which are expected to experience rapid economic development in the coming years


As the property management industry continues to evolve, Shiomi feels there will be a growing need to meet the diverse residential needs of a diverse population. He says, “As property managers, it is our responsibility to not only pursue profitable property management on behalf of our clients but also to provide appropriate services and infrastructure for residents by understanding their needs and providing quality services. This includes providing new housing styles for foreigners, the elderly, and tenants with pets.”


It is essential for Japan to constantly innovate and develop new services to share with the world, particularly as the country drew global attention with the Tokyo Olympics held in 2022. That presented a unique opportunity for talented domestic and international students to gain knowledge and experience in the property management industry and showcase the opportunities in the country.


In line with this, JPM launched an ideas competition for rented housing and also offered internships for international students, providing an opportunity for them to be part of their team and be at the forefront of the industry’s developments.


In addition to his professional achievements, Shiomi is also an accomplished author, having written several books on administration and property management. These include “User Manual” (co-written and published by PHP), “Practical Formation for Joint Ownerships Administration” (co-author), “How to face demands and problems in Co-Property Administration” (co-author), “Values and strategies management of rental properties” (co-written and published by Kankyokikaku Publishing Inc.), and “Evaluation Manual on Rental” (co-written and Published by Japan Property Publishing Association Management).


In conclusion, he says, “It is important to stay ahead of the curve in the ever-changing field of property management. By embracing innovation and a global mindset, property management professionals can drive the industry forward and meet the needs of society.”