A young, captivating, and highly intelligent woman, Yuka Fujii is the founder of a uniquely positioned startup. Famarry blends the words “family” and “marriage” to capture the heart of the business idea. An online platform that matches couples with their ideal wedding and family photographer, Famarry’s mission is to help couples realize their vision for their ideal wedding and family photography.
As many Americans say, the most important decision you need to make to realize your photography vision, is selecting your photographer! With the right photographer, your vision for your wedding or family photographer, the dream image becomes a reality.
Yuka's vision for Famarry is to become a global “Airbnb for photographers.”
Her 3-year plan is to make her business profitable and expand globally. Currently, the majority of her clients are Japanese, but she also has Taiwanese and Hong Kong couples, all of whom find their ideal photographer on Famarry. With their selected photographer, the couples go all over the world to shoot their dream photos.
Since the target audience is Japanese-speaking couples, Yuka seeks to find more Japanese-speaking photographers all over the world. Through her own initiative, SNS (a.k.a. “social media” in Japan) like Instagram, and network, she contacts photographers directly, and does her best to meet with them before selecting each one. With this hand-selection process, Yuka Fujii can ensure top-quality photographers for her clients.
Also, she secures bookings directly from companies, who have seen the work that her photographers do. Even so, her main challenge is to grow the business fast, specifically achieve “exponential growth.” Every single day, Yuka is working very hard to increase her business profits and share this wonderful platform with more people.
Now, let’s step back to share more about Yuka’s personal history. To say the least, Yuka Fujii had an exceptionally, diverse career path. Born in Syria, then attended high school in Dubai, and finally, worked in Vietnam for a few years, before she embarked on a brand new challenge — establishing a photography platform in Singapore. From there, she brought the business to Japan, secured funding, and secured both clients and photographers.
When I asked her if she works 7 days a week for 20 hours a day, she had a superb response. As the CEO, she can truly control her own schedule and time. If she’s incredibly busy, she can work very long. But if she wants to take a break, she can choose to take a day off and go to the beach with friends. And when she’s busy, that’s a very good thing. After all, that means she has a lot of business, and is earning a lot of money for the company. That’s exciting!
Since she loves what she does, her job is fundamentally fun and she never has any "hard work." Plus, the photographers are incredibly happy to receive more work, and the couples are extremely pleased with the high-quality service. Now, that she knows what she needs to focus on — growing her business exponentially — she can spend her time wisely to make her goal a reality.
And similar to Mariko Fukui, Yuka Fujii did not see her gender as a bias. Instead, it actually helped her earn more funding from Japanese investors for a few reasons.
¨ She stands out as a female entrepreneur! After all, everyone else is a male.
¨ Her business is all about the wedding industry — an area that typically females know best!
¨ And finally, her expertise and years of experience are in the wedding industry.
Because she lived abroad in other countries, Yuka’s perspective is understanding and leveraging her advantages of being Japanese in Vietnam, or being a Japanese businesswoman in Singapore. Of course, there are differences between men and women, but these differences, or features, help women stand out! After all, differences are just differences. Nothing else.
While there may be disadvantages to being a woman, there are many more advantages.
One of her major advantages is having a Japanese passport, as she has the ability to travel and conduct business globally. In this way, she focuses on and sells her strongest points, as well as unique features.
Thus, her gender was never a major hindrance to her chosen career path. And she hopes to encourage more Japanese women to follow in her footsteps.
On the side, Yuka is a speaker at local networking events, where she actively recruits female interns. But Yuka informed me that it’s actually quite difficult to recruit females in the startup world. In Japan, the startup / venture world is seen as unstable, and a huge risk. As such, she typically meets more males, who are interested in interning at her company. That’s why, she actively meets with female university students to encourage them to try something brand new!