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Messages from External Directors

August 2017

Realized Benefits of
Past Reforms
Koichiro Horiuchi External Director

It has been nine years since I became an external director at MARUI GROUP. The Company has continued to practice management driven by a strong passion and a commitment to innovation. The concept of co-creation management and other benefits that are appearing now are the products of reforms that MARUI GROUP has been implementing for years.

For example, the transition toward shopping centers and fixed-term rental contracts in the Retailing business may appear to have been a sudden change to those outside of the Company. On the contrary, however, the ideal form for MARUI GROUP's Retailing business had long been percolating in President Aoi's mind. When he was able to feel confident that the aforementioned transition was the appropriate course, the gears spun into motion. The redefinition of the Credit Card Services business as the FinTech business was a similar process. The Company was not likely aware of the term "FinTech" seven or eight years ago. However, a business model merging retailing and finance has always been important to MARUI GROUP. When searching for means of creating new businesses, several options were explored. In the end, the Company was able to affirm that FinTech was the appropriate approach. Even among the Board of Directors, the emergence of the word "FinTech" felt like a natural progression.

The role of external directors is viewed to be monitoring and supervising management. I personally have been managing a company for several years, and I primarily seek to help management exercise restraint, for example, by suggesting that we consider timing a little more, rather than focusing on spurring management forward. MARUI GROUP has a corporate culture of listening to customer input that dates back to its founding. As such, meetings of the Board of Directors are very frank with discussions based on an atmosphere of mutual respect. The Nominating and Compensation Committee is membered by President Aoi, External Director Okajima, and myself, meaning that officer nominations and compensation are checked by a committee comprising a majority of external directors. I feel as though the Company's compensation systems have been clear and appropriately linked to role and performance since I was appointed. However, another step forward was taken when the Company introduced a new medium-to-long-term incentive system based on the 2016 evaluation of the Board of Directors' effectiveness. MARUI GROUP is truly a company characterized by its ability to evolve with the times.

Career History
(As of June 26, 2017)
  • Apr. 1983Joined Long-Term Credit Bank of Japan
  • Mar. 1988Joined FUJI KYUKO CO., LTD.
  •  General Manager,
    Corporate Planning Division,
  • Jun. 1988Director,
  • Feb. 1988Senior Managing Director,
  • Jun. 1989Representative Director and Senior Managing Director,
  • Sep. 1989President and Representative Director,
    FUJI KYUKO CO., LTD. (Incumbent)
  • Jun. 2008External Director (Incumbent)
  • Jun. 2012External Audit & Supervisory Board Member,
    Yamanashi Chuo Bank, Ltd. (Incumbent)