2019 CEO Message

Michio Matsui President&CEO Michio Matsui

To our shareholders and customers:

Last year, Matsui Securities marked its 100th anniversary since foundation. Last year’s stock market fluctuated sharply back and forth in the range between 20,000 yen to 24,000 yen, since the Nikkei Index hit 24,000 yen level, the highest level in 26 years, in January, and then prospects for the future of the world economy became uncertain. This year as well, we should be prepared for a volatile market unless such sense of uncertainty is dispelled.

I have been serving as President for 30 years from the beginning of the 1990’s, and have been consistent in my decision that “We do not do business which sells good faith.” This is based on my experience back from when I was working for NYK Line.

In the shipping industry, a price war occurred due to liberalization more than 30 years ago. The shipping freight tariffs prior to liberalization were controlled by a worldwide cartel by the marine conference, and the shipping companies had no way to differentiate their services. In the 1980’s, due to U.S. President Reagan’s liberalization strategy, the situation completely changed. Tariffs entered the era of free competition, and many shipping companies who no longer were able to afford the crew’s wages and ship construction costs were forced to be merged into other company or go out of business.

Prior to liberalization, freight owner used to say “I will let you ship my freight if you show good faith”, and was asked in return “How should we show such good faith?” Then the freight owner would say, “Bring a brand new container.” However, a container is the same whether it is brand new or is full of rust, so long as the rain does not get in. As a matter of course, after liberalization, the freight owner’s request changed to discount of tariffs.

Since then, I resigned from NYK line in 1987, right in the middle of the bubble era, and joined Matsui Securities. At the time, it was still a face-to-face interaction type securities broker, and there I witnessed the same situation as in the shipping industry prior to liberalization. When I asked a sales representative in the company “What is your selling point?”, the person answered, “It is good faith. The commission cannot be discounted given that it is legally designated, so I just try to be a good servant.”

When I heard this, I felt that “This is the same as a brand new container. The time will come when we can no longer sell good faith.” This became the catalyst for drastically shifting the business by stopping face-to-face interaction type of marketing, and moving towards just receiving order from customers over the phone and through the internet.

Good faith is very important when conducting business with customers. However, it is not something to be sold. This way of thinking will never change in the future.

Your continued support is greatly appreciated.

Michio Matsui
President & CEO
Matsui Securities Co., Ltd.