Would you provide your analysis of the business results for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2020 (the 52nd term)?
Despite the continual spread of COVID-19 in the second half, each business was able to record strong performance.
In the 52nd term, even with the COVID-19 pandemic, both sales and profit exceeded our original forecast.
With regard to the business results by segment, overseas orders for iridium crucibles and orders for platinum products used in glass melting units in the electronics sector were strong, but there was an impact from a delayed recovery in orders for iridium crucibles from the smartphone field.
The thin film segment was able to exceed our original forecast as orders for ruthenium targets recovered as demand for servers at data centers increased and orders for silver alloy targets for touch panel wiring were solid.
Both revenue and profit for sensors increased as orders from overseas semiconductor manufacturers and high value-added products were strong, even though orders from semiconductor production equipment manufacturers in Japan were weak.
Sales of chemicals increased due to strong orders for chemical compounds for organic EL and both PGM raw materials and chemical compounds used in electrodes.
We increased the annual dividend per share by ¥10 from the original plan to ¥80.
Would you please tell us about earnings forecasts and initiatives for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2021 (the 53rd term)?
We will aim for increased revenue and profit by steadily driving each business forward.
Despite uncertainties due to the spread of COVID-19, the Company will aim for increased revenue and profit by steadily responding to demand against a backdrop of development of an IT society and active investments in the semiconductor industry.
Let me explain the current situation surrounding us and our initiatives specifically. We believe that it will take a little more time for demand for iridium crucibles in the smartphone field in the electronics sector to recover as it seems the spread of the 5G network, the next generation communications technology, has yet to come very soon. On the other hand, we expect development of the high temperature glass-melting equipment we have advanced until today to progress further toward practical application.
As for thin films, we expect demand for silver alloy targets for touch panel wiring to settle down, but we are expecting new applications for them to emerge. The world-wide spread of people working from home has fueled capital investment into data centers. We are therefore expecting an increase in demand for ruthenium targets for HDDs.
We expect strong orders for sensors as the market environment for semiconductors is stable and adoption of our proprietary high value-added sensors has been accelerated in the market.
As for chemicals, we completed capital investment to double the production capabilities and the plant has gone into full operation. We believe orders for iridium chemical compounds used as a primary material for organic EL phosphorescent materials will stay firm. Furthermore, development of the overseas market for FT-eco catalysts will start alongside the domestic market through a joint venture firm set up with a major South African mining group. Despite concerns over procurement of the raw materials due to the impact of the spread of COVID-19, we will continue to fulfill our responsibility as a leading supplier of iridium and ruthenium products.
We are working toward our goal of growing the recycling business (refining and recovery), for which the Tsuchiura Plant is mainly engaged, as the 5th pillar of our core businesses and have positioned the 53rd term as the starting year for that goal. We are determined to devote ourselves in this field further with active capital investments, etc.
Would you please tell us about the future of Furuya Metal, such as fields you will focus on?
We aim to grow continuously as a company that contributes to the environment by honing one-of-a-kind products and technologies of our own.
Over the past few years, attention has been paid to corporate initiatives for the environment and a sustainable society as represented by ESG and SDGs. In this context, most of our technologies and products contribute to the improvement of the environment and realization of a sustainable society.
One example is the establishment of mass production technology of nano alloy originating from the collaborative research with Professor Kitagawa of Kyoto University launched in 2014. In the past, a large volume of costly platinum group metals (PGM) had been used for catalysts, but nano alloy technology enabled us to reduce the use of rare PGM significantly. We have established a mass production technology indispensable for practical application of nano alloys and paved the way to successful mass production. In the same manner, recycling of iridium and ruthenium has been positioned as one of our significant initiatives for the environment and a sustainable society. Capital investments at the Tsuchiura Plant aim to achieve a stable supply of these metals.
Regarding FT-eco catalysts, while advancing market development in the B-to-C field, we have established a joint venture firm with a major South African mining group. We will develop business that contributes to reduction of food waste and improvement of a healthy lifestyle by providing deodorizers, antifungal products and antibacterial products in China and South East Asia.
Another topic is that we were recognized by METI as one of the “Global Niche Top Companies Selection 100 (The 2020 edition)” for the second consecutive time, following the first recognition in 2014, with our iridium chemical compound used as a primary material for organic EL phosphorescent materials. We were rated highly with high revenue and a global market share of approx. 90% that this product achieved, demonstrating our indispensable presence in the supply chain.
In August 2020, we resolved to dispose of treasury shares and raised funds in the next month. The purpose of the disposition was to procure funds for capital investments and to improve the balance sheet. Yet we believe an increase in the number of shareholders will also lead to improvement of the shareholder distribution and the liquidity of shares.
We aim to achieve sales of ¥23,300 million and an ordinary income of ¥4,400 million in the 53rd term with an annual dividend of ¥80 per share. Going forward, we will reliably contribute to the environment with one-of-a-kind products and technologies of our own.