How I Got Here: Armanda Smit

Armanda Smit Profile PhotoWhen I was younger and had to choose a university, all I knew was that I had to learn ‘something international.’ So, I went to an Institute for International Studies, learned about doing business across different cultures, and lived in France and Cuba. Afterwards, I worked in several international companies and became a Sustainability Consultant.

A few years after meeting my husband, I became pregnant with our first child, and we moved to Manila for his job. It took me some time to get used to being a full-time parent in a tropical country. Then, we moved to Bangkok, where I joined a mothers group as a volunteer for the charities commission.  We moved once more, this time to Tokyo. After giving birth to our second child, I found the opportunity to start a business of my own: my goal was to start a local branch of NOOX Designs, which designs child-safe fabric souvenirs for ‘tiny grown-ups.’

After conducting my own feasibility research, I joined FEW and the FEW Women’s Start-Up Club. The resources and women from these groups helped me find inspiration, motivation, support and practical information to launch my business. I then started ordering my own stock and creating sales channels.

I really enjoy having my own business. Although of course it can be hard to start from the ground up, I also find it challenging and satisfying. It’s such a pleasure to realize that I have accomplished something great that I initially had no clue about!

Unfortunately, my family and I will be moving from Tokyo at the end of this month. I cannot take NOOX Tokyo with me, but I would LOVE it if someone else in Tokyo would take over and enjoy the role as I have. If you would like to run your own business and have the freedom to manage your own products and time along with the support of a group of ladies across Asia, please check and contact me for more information!

You can learn more about NOOX and contact Armanda at: .


May 2018 FEW Women’s Start-Up Club Recap: The Importance of Cyber Security to Entrepreneurs

In our May Women’s Start-Up Club, Nicola Vote of McAfee shed light on how entrepreneurs can protect their customers and also protect their reputation and business online. And she managed to leave us all well informed, alert yet a bit “scared”, too.   Let’s jump into some definitions and which aspects are important when it […]

Published on 24th June 2018

Special Event Recap – Radical Boundaries Workshop with Sarah Furuya

  FEW’s June Special Event Workshop, took place on June 21st, 2018 at H&R Roppongi and was run by Sarah Furuya, FEW Strategic Partner, long-time member and former president who works as a life & executive coach, facilitator and mentor, supporting particularly women in achieving their goals and realizing their dreams. Her workshop “Radical Boundaries: […]

Published on 24th June 2018

Q&A with Cynthia Usui, author and Head of Hospitality, Tokyo 2020 Olympics, The Coca-Cola Company

Leading up to our upcoming monthly meeting on ‘Breaking the Mold: Finding New Beginnings at Any Age,’ we’re featuring a Q&A with Cynthia Usui, author of 専業主婦が就職するまでにやっておくべき8つのこと (Eight things Full-Time Housewives Should Do Before Entering the Workforce) and Head of Hospitality, Tokyo 2020 Olympics, The Coca-Cola Company. The Q&A is modeled on the Proust Questionnaire, designed to […]

Published on 7th June 2018

June 2018 Strategic Partner Member Offers and Other News

Check out the latest member offers and opportunities from our Strategic Partners and other FEW Community Events here! Our Strategic Partners are committed to bringing the best services and products to FEW members. And go to our Strategic Partners page to learn more about all of FEW’s Strategic Partners, who not only support FEW’s activities but also […]

Published on 6th June 2018

May 2018 Monthly Meeting Recap: Stronger Together: FEW x FAJ

Who knew that our members had so many hidden talents? The first joint event with FEW and FAJ — the group for French-speaking professional women in Tokyo — on May 15 unveiled quite few surprises as we listened to presentations about their work, projects, lives, experiences and aspirations. Members of both associations are involved in […]

Published on 5th June 2018