Welcome to the Hakuhodo DY Group website. Allow me to offer a review of Hakuhodo DY Group business performance in fiscal 2011, and to explain strategies and other initiatives currently undertaken by the Group.
The advertising market faced an extremely difficult start to fiscal 2011, ended March 31, 2012, from the effects of the Great East Japan Earthquake. This impact was especially large in the first quarter, with a succession of various marketing activities being canceled or postponed. The market began to recover from around the summer, however, as customers' production facilities and supply chains were restored. Subsequently, the market remained solid, growing from the previous year on a full-year basis. The Hakuhodo DY Group also had a difficult start to fiscal 2011, with declines in both revenue and profit in the first quarter from the significant impact of the earthquake. Nevertheless, the advertising market rebounded more quickly than initially anticipated, and with strong determination we proactively proposed solutions to customers' marketing issues. As a result, we were able to increase our market share, with revenue and profit growth leading to results that surpassed our initial forecasts. I consider the year to have been one in which we made solid advances toward the achievement of our targets for fiscal 2013, the final year under our Medium-Term Business Plan. This momentum has continued into fiscal 2012, which is off to an auspicious start. During fiscal 2011, we continued to implement a variety of measures to strengthen our position in the three priority strategic domains identified in the Medium-Term Business Plan. We expanded our areas of operations in the Internet and Marketing / Promotion domains by making affiliates, consolidated subsidiaries and through mergers and acquisitions, and in the Global domain we were engaged in proactive business development in China and other Asian emerging markets. These efforts resulted in revenue growth in all three domains. We will continue to move forward under the Medium-Term Business Plan by strengthening our position and growing in these three priority strategic domains. With regard to returns to shareholders, our fundamental policy is to pay a stable dividend. We have paid a full-year dividend of ¥70 for fiscal 2011, as initially planned. With the advertising market expected to recover in fiscal 2012, we are forecasting a further improvement in results, and are planning to raise the dividend by ¥10, to ¥80, while comprehensively taking into account the business environment going forward.