CR 3

Things aren’t looking too good for Japan’s soccer team as it goes into its third and final game of group play at the World Cup. After a heartbreaking loss in its opener against Ivory Coast, and then a contest with Greece in which neither team’s shots could find the net, it’s do-or-die time for Japan, which is going to need quite a bit of help, and possibly luck, to advance to the Round of 16.

But all of the myriad tie-breakers Japan needs to go its way won’t mean anything if it can’t defeat group powerhouse Colombia, which currently has a 2-0 record. With all of Japan hoping for a victory over the South American nation, Team Japan is getting a little bit of extra moral support as the Japanese arm of Columbia Records is changing its name to help cheer on its local sports heroes.

Given that they’re spelled differently, it’s obvious that Columbia Records doesn’t have anything to do with the country of Colombia. Rather, the music company gets its name from being founded in the U.S.’ District of Columbia.

▼ The headquarters of Columbia Phonograph Company, which would later become Columbia Records

CR 1

Still, “Columbia” sounds just like “Colombia.” This makes things a little tricky for Japan Columbia (or Nippon Columbia, as it’s known in Japanese).

CR 2

In order to inject a bit of national pride into its business dealings, Japan Columbia has printed up a special batch of business cards for 100 of its sales and promotions employees. Each one includes a special message of “Go Japan!” printed on it, plus a pretty large change in the company’s name.

Instead of saying “Japan Columbia,” the cards say “Japan vs. Colombia.”

Each of the selected employees received 30 of the special business cards, which they’ll be using on June 24 and 25, the day Japan and Colombia face off. We have a hunch they’ll be trying to pass out their quotas as soon as possible in order to finish work well before kick-off at 4 p.m. Brazil time.

Source: Sponichi, Burusoku VIP
Top image: Ameblo
Insert images: Wikipedia/Babaluma, Nippon Columbia