CEO Comments

Kaoru Hayashi

Representative Director,
President Executive Officer and Group CEO,
Digital Garage, Inc.

CEO Comment “Great East Japan Earthquake and Twitter-based Disaster Area Support”

We express our deepest sympathy to the victims of the Great East Japan Earthquake in March 2011.

To be of some help to the disaster victims, the Digital Garage Group started discussing a paid vacation system aimed at supporting volunteer activities by our employees. We are considering immediately establishing an environment for employees with the intention to take a leave of absence from their jobs and devote themselves to support activities. At the same time, we intend to develop social media to support volunteer activities by large numbers of people.

Donations from Twitter users are being raised not only inside Japan, but also all over the world through the “Donate for earthquake relief” page that we started developing with Twitter, Inc. of the U.S. immediately after the earthquake and set up on March 12 U.S. time. Donations will be used to provide relief to disaster victims through the Japan Red Cross Society and other disaster area support organizations.

After the earthquake, a great number of people have been using Twitter to confirm information about the disaster and the safety of the victims. Twitter’s unique advantage, which enables users to transmit information to the general public in real time using a mobile phone, was clearly demonstrated as a result. On the other hand, it is also true that the authenticity of some of the information exchanged via Twitter was questionable.

To deal with this fact and deliver more credible information to Twitter users, Digital Garage, Inc. and its subsidiary CGM Marketing, Inc. (CGMM) formulated a Twitter account authentication scheme for public institutions jointly with the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry and today launched “J Government on twinavi”, an effort to offer information utilizing Twitter’s official “twinavi” navigator being operated by CGMM. (*Related article on Nihon Keizai Shimbun, related news on NHK)

Following the earthquake, Twitter-based transmission of information by the national government, local governments and other public institutions has been revitalized. Compared with before, this newly-established authentication scheme can drastically alleviate the troublesome procedures to prove a Twitter account claiming to be a public institution was not a case of “identity theft.” We hope this effort will help the disaster victims in some small way.

As mentioned in the “Notice on the Impact from the Tohoku-Pacific Ocean Earthquake (PDF)” released to our shareholders and investors on March 14, we are fortunate to be predicting only a minor impact from the earthquake on our financial results for the first three quarters (July to March) of the fiscal year ending June 2011. As for Q4 (April to June), management and the employees are striving to develop new smartphone-based businesses, while further strengthening the Twitter and other new social media services that we have been working on until now.

After witnessing this “once in a thousand years” disaster, we are again reminded of the foundation of Digital Garage’s business philosophy, to offer “services that make a contribution to the world” and we are determined to continue to sincerely work on our business.

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