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New Year Message from President and CEO (abridged version)

January 4, 2021
Ichiro Okamoto
President and CEO
Nippon Light Metal Holdings Co., Ltd.

New Year Message from President and CEO (abridged version)



Happy New Year! And GO ANZEN NI!*1.
This year, let us once again continue to do our jobs while aiming for absolutely zero accidents.

Firstly, I offer my deepest sympathies to those who have lost loved ones to COVID-19. And as a fellow comrade in the fight against COVID-19, I would also like to send encouragement to all those patients and families even now fighting to achieve complete recovery from the virus, the healthcare professionals giving their dedicated support, and researchers continuing to devote their every effort to creating treatments and therapies.

Like many, the NLM Group has also in no small part been affected by COVID-19. The total number of Group members infected by the virus since last year is now in the double digits. On the other hand, turning our eye to business, in the first half of the previous year, demand declined drastically, particularly for automobiles, construction materials, and steel, and our performance suffered severely in turn. In the first half of the fiscal year, ordinary profit was in the black at 7.7 billion yen, but this was a 33% decline compared with the previous year. This is not a level of business performance that is entirely satisfactory. However, as a result of the efforts we have put into strengthening our financial situation to date, I believe we are fully poised to go on the offensive in a post-COVID-19 world.

In times like these when the economy is experiencing stagnation or recession, the first thing you must do is to thoroughly cut costs – in other words, to “trim the fat.” We must reevaluate our cost structures and aggressively eliminate waste, irregularities, and inefficiencies. Let us take the time to properly reflect once more on the concept of NPS and take this as an opportunity to further transform ourselves into a lean corporate group.

This year is the first year of the “post-COVID-19 world.” It is also a year in which the world will be undergoing great change. Among other things, there are expectations that, with the changing of the president of the United States, there will be a global shift away from a trend of nationalism and toward a trend of international cooperation. The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement announced last year would seem to be one aspect of this. In addition, we are facing a now-or-never situation in terms of measures to combat global warming, and I believe we will see rapid progress on a global scale in this area. The expansion of the utilization of renewable energy, the creation of methods for collecting and storing CO2, and an increasing shift toward electric vehicles are just some examples by which these measures can be achieved. Meanwhile, turning our attention to domestic Japanese affairs, the implementation of telework and working from home has, as a means of combating COVID-19, further progressed and, coupled with movements such as DX (digital transformation), it seems the very nature of work itself will change greatly. In addition, it is believed that the changes in the composition of the population of Japan, caused by the overall declining number of people and the rapid increase in senior citizens, will bring about a drastic reduction in purchasing power in the near future.

The world is constantly changing, not just this year but always and at all times. The world of “how efficiently and cheaply can you make the same kind of the thing in the same kind of way” is already long gone. What I would like you to understand, deeply and thoroughly, is that we are embroiled in a competition to see who can adapt to an unknown world which will be unlike that of yesterday or today; leverage their intelligence to create value for customers; and deliver to market as fast and as much as possible new products and services bursting with comprehensive value, one after another.

In this ever-changing world, we will continue to take on new challenges in order to be a corporate group a half-step ahead of the rest of the world. We have accumulated experience through long years of involvement in a diverse array of business domains, listening to our customers about what is valuable to them, and working as a team. In the current social environment, it is my belief that we are standing in an extremely favorable position. Supported by our strengths, it is possible for the NLM Group not merely to thrive in a world filled with competitors, but even to break through into a world where we face no competition at all.

There are five keys to achieving this:

    1. Harnessing our agility and diversity as Team NLM, put the creation of value for customers first.
    2. Proactively engage with outside parties and look not just at what is valuable for a customer right now but, based on information from a variety of sources, anticipate what will be of value to a customer in the future and make that a target to achieve.
    3. Look at development as not just a mere technical aspect but rather as “business.”
    4. While continuing to value “MONOZUKURI (manufacturing),” aim to take the business elements derived from “MONOZUKURI” – things like maintenance operations, design, and consulting work – and build on them to develop our “MONOZUKURI & something extra” approach.
    5. However, our Group’s strengths must be the starting point for the above activities, and we must never be afraid of change, including in the workplace.

This year, let us once again continue to take on new challenges as we stride toward the future, never remaining satisfied with the status quo and never giving in to the many hardships we may face.

Let’s achieve growth steadily again this year, one step at a time, following a great vector as Team NLM - Groundbreaking Innovator of Aluminum and Beyond. GO ANZEN NI*1.


*1 GO ANZEN NI: A word of greeting that shares “Safety takes priority over everything else” and wishes for mutual safety and health.


Contact: Public Relations and Investor Relations
  Planning Administration Dept.
  Nippon Light Metal Holdings Co., Ltd.