The Company was established in 1918, incorporated in 1931, registered as a securities firm in 1948 and became a member of the Tokyo Stock Exchange in 1949. Prior to 1995, the Company was small and tiny conventional securities broker ranked last among industry peers in terms of revenue and offered retail brokerage services through a conventional sales force and branch offices.
The Company has emerged as an industry leader by the structural reforms to actively take advantage of the deregulation of the financial services industry under the leadership of Michio Matsui, its current president & CEO. In 1996, the Company became the first broker in Japan to eliminate stock custodian fees. In 1997, following a partial deregulation of Japanese brokerage commissions, the Company also became the first company in Japan to announce deep reductions in trading commissions for shares traded on the Japanese OTC market, cutting them by one-half.
In the late 1990s, the Company shifted its operations to serve investors who do not require investment advice by reducing its traditional sales force and sales branches, instead taking customer orders by telephone. In light of the proliferation of the Internet and deregulation of brokerage commissions, however, the Company decided to eliminate its sales force and sales branches entirely in order to refocus its business as an online brokerage. The Company’s Netstock online brokerage services, introduced in 1998, have become its principal line of business.
Drawing on decades of the experiences and experiments under the structural reforms, the Company has adopted itself to the changing business environment. That is the significance of its existence as a pioneer. The table below reflects highlights of the Company’s developments since the introduction of Netstock:
|May 1998||The Company introduces Netstock, one of the first online brokerage services in Japan. It becomes the first brokerage to offer online margin trading in Japan.|
|October 1999||The Company revises its brokerage fee structure (“Box Rate”) in conjunction with the deregulation of brokerage commissions. Fees become based on the number and total value of trades executed per day.|
|September 2000||The Company revises its brokerage fee structure (“Box Rate”) further to charge commissions based almost entirely on the total value of trades executed in a day. This fee structure was the first of its kind in Japan.|
|April 2001||The Company introduces NetFx, an online foreign exchange trading service.|
|August 2001||The Company lists its Shares on the first section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange.
The Company deregulates its own internal rules with respect to the minimum guarantee amount for the margin trades.
|May 2002||The Company enters into the underwriting business.|
|September 2002||The Company introduces stock lending services (“yokabu”) as a new asset management product for non-active individual investors.|
|April 2003||The Company revises its brokerage commission structure “Box Rate” which merged all brokerage commissions including the option trading commission into the “1 box” structure.|
|July 2003||The Company starts unlimited margin trading.|
|April 2005||The Company starts trading for Nikkei 225 Futures and Nikkei 225 Options (short).|
|July 2006||The Company starts trading for Nikkei 225 mini.|
|September 2006||The Company introduces real time trading tool "Netstock High Speed".|
|March 2009||The Company introduces real time information application "KABU touch" for smartphone.|
|January 2013||The Company introduces "Margin Account for Day-trades" which is designed to take full advantage of the benefits under the newly relaxed deposit rules for margin trading.|
|March 2014||The Company introduces “Premium Short-Selling Services” which enables short-selling for unique stocks listed on JASDAQ and Mothers.|
|November 2016||The Company starts mutual fund business and offering the investment management platform based on Robo-advisor.||March 2018||The Company starts off-hours trading to increase customers’ trading opportunity.||May 2018||The Company starts better price execution service to seek price improvement opportunity for retail clients.|