Startups in Tokyo abandon offices amid coronavirus upheaval

TOKYO — The operator of Machimachi, a social network for neighbors, on April 17 gave its landlord the required three-month notification that it intends to vacate an office near Tokyo’s Shibuya Station.

Like other Japanese startups, Machimachi finds itself at the vanguard of a cost-cutting trend that centers around office space, made superfluous to some businesses by society’s response to the novel coronavirus.

They are canceling their leases.

Machimachi at the end of 2019 raised 100 million yen ($937,000), enough to continue operating for two years. The lease cancellation gives it additional breathing room, “increasing the possibility of our survival

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