June 2012 Archives

Dear Industry friends,

Japan Music Trades, music products trade magazine in Japan, continuously serving for the industry for 50 years has just completed 2012 Year Book, an informative industry directory which contains detailed lists of musical instrument manufacturers, distributors, exporters & importers along with latest statistics on Japanese music products production, sales and export.

Whether you are interested in expanding your business in Japan, looking for distributors or product sources, 2012 Year Book will best serve your purpose at minimum expense.

It costs 2,000 yen plus airmail postages and handling charges from 500 yen to 800 yen depending on destinations.

We accept payment by credit cards (Visa, Mastercard, American Express, JCB). Please notify us of your credit card number, name of the card holder and expiry date.

Thank you very much for your attention, and we are looking forward to hearing from you.

Kind regards,

Japan Music Trades
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Yamaha Becomes Largest Stockholder of Jeugia

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Yamaha and Kyoto-based Jeugia, one of the leading music retailers in Japan, announced on May 24 that Yamaha acquired 1,426,000 stocks of Jeugia (28.534 billion yen worth) listed at Second Section of Osaka Stock Exchange to become the largest stockholder of Jeugia.

Yamaha served as the second largest stockholder of Jeugia until very recently holding 1,213,600 stocks. Yoshio Tanaka, chairman and president of Jeugia steps down to consultant, and Yoichi Yamada assumes the presidential position. Yamaha now holds 32.04% of the total Jeugia stocks.

Founded in 1952, Jeugia has 18 outlets and music teaching studios in Kyoto and Osaka areas, and 185 employees. Tanaka commented that the new transaction would improve business relationships of the two companies and contribute to enhance retail operation of Jeugia.

Shimamura Music Celebrates 50th Anniversary

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JMT-Web-News-Mr.-Shimamura.jpgOn May 25, Shimamura Music hosted a reception party in celebration of its 50th birthday inviting over 300 industry guests, bankers, musicians and journalists at Rose Room of Tokyo Kaikan, Tokyo. One hundred Shimamura employees also joined and shared the successful history of the company with the guests. (Photo left: Mototsugu Shimamura)

Founded in 1962 by Mototsugu Shimamura, Shimamura Music has grown to one of the leading music retailers in the world market today with 142 music stores and music teaching studios in 36 cities throughout Japan, and 28.9 billion yen annual sales.

JMT-Web-News-Shimamura-site.jpgShimamura greeted his guests saying that he would thank countless business relations and support given by the industry leaders since the very beginning. When he was 26 years old, and felt uncertain in running a stationary shop succeeded from father following his death, he launched the first music teaching studio in cooperation with Yamaha. The idea to launch music-related business himself was quite exciting. He loved listening to music while he was a student. The teaching operation made an instant success with revenues three times more than expected.

Another business enlightenment came in 1979 as Shimamura joined Retail Management School organized by Shogyokai(Monthly Journal of Retailing) magazine where he met Shin'ichi Kawasaki. "Human power is the most critical for business of specialist store", Kawasaki pointed in his lecture. Shimamura believes he has learned the basic business ethics from him. A business trip to the U.S. during the time gave him a valuable insight toward products distribution in Japan.

Shimamura took the opportunity to be a national music chain when he met Takuya Okada, CEO of AEON Group, one of the most influential retail chains in 1982. With the first music store opened in AEON's JUSCO supermarket in Edogawa-ku, Tokyo, Shimamura expanded shopping center locations in the following years.

Shimamura closed his remarks by saying, "Our corporate policies remain the same in the future which are to best serve our customers, meeting thier requirements and helping them pursue their goals in music making. We will build real value in our business and win confidence of our customers."

The guests included Mitsuru Umemura, president of Yamaha and Takuya Okada, honorary chairman of AEON.

2012 Music China: 28 Companies Join Japan Pavilion

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Japan Musical Instruments Manufacturers Association (JMIMA) supports Japan's industry members staging Japan Pavilion with help of Small and Medium Size Enterprise Agency and JETRO at the coming Music China in Shanghai. It will offer the industry which is largely consisted of small and medium size companies a great opportunity to explore Chinese market.

JETRO, the organizer of the Japan Pavilion, accepted space requests from 28 companies and groups by the closing date of May 10. It will be a 360 sq. meter huge exhibit with 40 booths in total.

Yutaka Kurihara, president of newly formed Overseas Exhibit Committee, commented, "We are grateful for JETRO and other organizations which have helped us to materialize this project, and we are pleased with the very positive response from the industry members."

The exhibit fee includes basic booth decoration, costs for customs clearance for exhibit items, transportation, move-in and ?out of the exhibit halls, an exhibitor brochure, and a Chinese interpreter.

Tomoharu Mochizuki, Overseas Trade Fair Division of Trade Fair Department for JETRO, commented, "Compared to indiviual participation, a group entry will give exhibitors a more effective platform to present their products. We believe the Japanese pabilion at Music China will provide exhibitors with an 'All Japan Consortium' resulting in an exceptional opportunity to explore the global musical instrument market." 

The Japan Pavilion will be staged in the Hall W1.

The Japan Pavilion exhibitors and exhibit products
* Aoyama Harp Co.(harps)
* Barock Music Co., Ltd. (mallets for percussion instruments and drum sticks)
* Best Brass Corp. (mutes, electric saxophones and sound muting system)
* Chubu Musical Instruments Manufacturers' Assn.
* Cosmo Machine (wind instruments parts)
* Duplex Co., Ltd. (musical instruments cases, touring cases)
* Global Corp. (wind instruments accessories)
* Higashi Gengakki Seisakusho (double basses)
* Japan Music Trade Co., Ltd. (monthly Japan Music Trades magazine and other publications)
* Kawada Taiko Factory Co. (Japanese traditional taiko drums)
* Kiwaya Co., Ltd. (ukuleles and cases)
* Korg Inc. (synthesizers and digital pianos)
* Korogisha Co., Ltd. (xylophones and glockenspiels)
* Mishimaya Gakki Co., Ltd. (Japanese ritual drums and shamisens)
* Miyazawa Flutes Mfg. Co., Ltd. (flutes)
* Morizono Import & Export Co., Ltd. (metronomes and tuners)
* Muramatsu Flute Mfg. Co., Ltd. (flutes)
* Nikko Seiki Co., Ltd. (metronomes)
* Nippon Case Mfg. Co., Ltd. (wind instruments cases)
* Otsuka Musical Instrument Mfg. Co., Ltd. (ocarinas)
* Rokkomann, Inc. (classical and acoustic guitars)
* Saito Gakki Seisakusho Co., Ltd. (marimbas, vibraphones and xylophones)
* Sankyo Flute Seisakusho, Ltd. (flutes)
* Tokyo Musical Instruments Manufacturers' Assn.
* Tombo Musical Instr. Co., Ltd. (harmonicas)
* Toyama Musical Instrument Co., Ltd. (recorders and travelso)
* Toyo Piano Mfg. Co., Ltd. (pianos)
* Yanagisawa Wind Instrument Inc. (saxophones)

1st NAMM Musikmesse Russia

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Russia-sta.jpgLow profile caused poor attendance
NAMM and Messe Frankfurt co-staged 1st musical instruments/prolight and sound show in Russia from May 16 through 19 at OCE Expo Center in Moscow. Having world's 9th largest population between vast Europe and Asia and growing economy, the industry keeps an eye on Russia as a huge underdeveloped market.

According to the show regulation leaflet, Russia has 4.5 million dollars music and sound products market. In Moscow, there are over 170 music conservatories, 15 art and culture academies, 32 concert halls and 173 theatres.

Russia-2F.JPGDespite growing expectations for the prospective market with 300 million populations including neighboring countries, the first show in Russia closed with much disappointment of the 195 exhibitors as it drew meager 6,275 visitors. General public admitted free for the latter 2 days. To some extent, the poor attendance is attributed to less conspicuous set-up compared with the two other exhibitions concurrently organized at the same premise. Also, it was planned and staged under such unprecedented incidents as North-eastern Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan, and European debt crisis.

Aside from the quiet settings, the show has offered the exhibitors an opportunity to get information on music market and feel business trends in Russia.

Huge prospects for electric guitars
Music market in Russia has been hardly known in Japan, however, the country has rich soil for pop music and jazz. While, rock'n roll, which was not recognized during Soviet Union period, is now gaining its popularity. Japan's export of electric guitars to Russia jumped up 16 times from 650 units in 5 years after 2002 to 10,200 units in the following 5 years. It suggests orders were simply filled but sales promotional efforts were hardly involved. Electric guitar market is more brisk than expected. Growing demands for electronic keyboards including digital piano are prominent as well.

Yamaha is approaching local governments suggesting music education based on digital musical instruments, and Jiro Ohno, president of Yamaha Music (Russia) LLC explained that the company was now promoting remote lesson project using Disklavier teamed with Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory.

Shuji Kamo of Roland says that the company runs 6 retail music stores with Planet and Foresta in-store shops in the country. He expects increased sales of digital drums in coming years to add to already favorable digital piano business.

As a pioneer in the Russian market, Casio opened a representative office in Moscow in 1993. Takayuki Okuno, president of Casio LLC, expressed that its electronic keyboard business had outgrown those of Germany and France today.

Last December, WTO approved Russia as its new member. When it takes effect this summer, 18% import duty will be reduced which will put spurs to imported music products.

As typical as NAMM Show and Music China, NAMM organized nearly 50 NAMM University educational, business, and technology sessions, each of them filled to capacity of 70 seats.  


Hiroo Okabe Receives Vienna Merit Award

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Okabe-GVLW1206.jpgHiroo Okabe, director, Managing Executive Officer, Yamaha, received Merit Award in Gold of the Province of Vienna. Regulated under Law of Vienna in 1967, the award is given to individuals who have been accredited to development of culture and art of the province.

Okabe was acclaimed for his years of dedication to the culture of Vienna through close-knit relationship with Boesendorfer, development of musical instruments specially designed for the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. (Photo: Andreas Mailath-Pokorny, left, and Hiroo Okabe.) 

The award presentation took place on May 30 at the Vienna Municipal Office, where Andreas Mailath-Pokorny, Executive City Councillor for Cultural Affairs and Science, handed over the award to Okabe.

Okabe commented after the presentation, "Yamaha's corporate policy has been advancement of expression capabilities of musicalinstruments while meeting requirements of all artists from professionals to amateurs that will contribute to growth of music culture. We feel very honored that our activities to keep maintain rich musical tradition of Boesendorfer and Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra for the generations ahead have been recognized by the Province of Vienna. I'd like to share this honor with past and present members at Yamaha.

Ishibashi_Shanghai_06.jpg Tokyo-based music retailer, Ishibashi Music, launched the first retail store in the  musical instrument street in Shanghai on April 28. The largest store in the area has 450 sq. meter space with stocks of 500 electric guitars, 50 acoustic gutars, 50 guitar amplifiers, 10 drum kits, 50 snare drums, and 20 electronic keyboards. In addition it has an in-store stage for seminars and live musical events.

Kiyokazu Ishibashi, president, announced the project during the last Music China said that the new store would provide the same level of repair, after-sales and customer services, and suabstantial selection of music products as in Japan for Chinese customers.

Ishibashi_Shanghai_499.jpgWhen it opened, consumers were marvelled with the showcase accommodating expensive models of Gibson, Fender, PRS and other brands priced over 1 million yen. Less expensive 300 thousand yen and so guitars are layed out on the sales floor so that visitors can try them which is unfamiliar in China.

To differentiate their inventory from the local stores, Ishibashi has brought in selected guitars not found in China. Nevertheless, it has rich selection of parts for guitar and drums.(Photo below: Soichiro Takizawa, general manager,center raw, 2nd from right flanked by store staff)

Soichiro Takizawa, general manager of the store says, "Our customers appreciate guitar repair services we provide here very much. Traditionally, it has been our core business that generates confidence and good relationship with our customers.

Given its nature as an international city, the store has become a meeting point for foreign music makers stationed in and near Shanghai from various parts of the world.

JASRAC 2011 Revenue Slightly Declines

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Japanese Society for Rights of Authors, composers and Publishers (JASRAC) announced 2011 annual report on May 23. The total revenue decreased by 0.6% from the previous year to 105.894 billion yen. Though the organization had to suspend collection of royalty fees temporarily in the areas hard hit by the North-eastern Japan earthquake and tsunami as over 2,000 karaoke bars and restaurants closed the business, and it would be 2.5 million yen decline of revenue, the result ended up with a slight dip of 670 million yen over the year before. After June, number of concert settings revived, while broadcasting, wired broadcasting and videogram categories grew continuously.

The videogram revenue was 18 billion yen, a 9.1% increase, including 8 million yen growth of music DVD category and 2 million yen TV drama DVD category. Movie streaming rose by 37.4% to 1.135 billion yen, and music streaming including PC downloads and internet radio also increased.